When Huge Personal Growth Comes From Simple Changes

When Huge Personal Growth Comes From Simple Changes

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In this Current Events Friday’s Post (CE-Friday’s), I’m going to tell you a story about how life teaches you lessons when you least expect it. We’ll also talk about leaving a lasting impression on those around you, then I’ll tell you why my story and this particular lesson will help advance your career or business.


CE-Friday’s – “What you need to know today in less than 500 words”



There’s a code among runners, much like Jeep people.


When you pass one another on a run, there’s a sliding scale of acknowledgment that takes place. A minor effort toward leaving a lasting impression.


The minimum required dose of acknowledgment is eye contact. That’s followed up by the head nod and typically tops out at a cordial wave. Personally, I throw up a casual ‘deuces’ every time I pass a fellow calorie crusher.



There is a rare occasion where someone doesn’t acknowledge that you’re two passing kindred spirits, and that’s normally when they’re at the end of a run and using every ounce of energy in their being to just finish the run without keeling over. In that case, they’re excused.


But every other time, there’s something that takes place along our acknowledgment spectrum.


It’s part of the game.


It’s what we do. 


But yesterday something extraordinary happened on my run


I had a dude pass me while running in the opposite direction, veer out of his lane toward mine (normally a fatal flaw), and hold up his hand to offer a high five.


Not a clue who this dude was but I was floored.


I threw up my hand at the last second, not for my trademark ‘deuces’ but to meet his hand with mine.


In a millisecond, we made crisp clean contact, which was met with the perfect noise and a slight sting in my hand… And all I could do was smile.


The unknown dude had made my run by leaving a lasting impression


I was fueled up with joy, encouragement, and wonder as I continued on and didn’t look back. It was the perfect five and I couldn’t sully it with looking back and possibly ruining the moment.


So I ran on with a huge smile on my face and a pep in my step. And I finished my normal loop 30 seconds earlier than I normally would have.


Leaving a lasting impression takes such minimal effort


This guy gave me a simple high five, cheered me up, and ultimately motivated me to run faster. It took him only a second and not much effort above the norm to leave a lasting impression.


What is something that we can do in our daily lives to leave a similar lasting impression on a loved one. Or how can you take this lesson and apply it to the office?


Before I handed in my 2-weeks notice and left my cushy government job, I made it a habit to liberally hand out high-fives and kudos to my coworkers.


“Great job with that email, Pete! You’re crushing it!” 


It didn’t take much but as I was leaving that job, I had many folks come up to me and say thanks for a similar encounter. I remembered very few of them, but to my coworkers – they left a lasting impression.


These days, I make it a point to go one conversation piece above the norm with most patients who come through our office. I’ll ask them, “How’d it go back there?” Then actually listen to their response before following up.


Doesn’t take much, but more than a few folks leave our office with a smile. 


What’s something minimal that you’ve done or would like to do to leave a lasting impression on someone in your life? 

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