We all need a little motivation and inspiration sometimes, and Drew Dudley's TED Talk entitled Leading with Lollipops is a short little video that has definitely inspired us here at Youth Action Hudson. We speak about leadership a lot with our youth volunteers, and I think sometimes the idea of being a leader can be a little overwhelming. Dudley explains how every day actions can have a profound impact on those around us. So many of us have helped to change the lives of our friends, families and even strangers, and yet we have no idea. This talk is a great reminder that we all have the potential to be catalysts for change and help people in ways we never thought possible.
Drew Dudley - Leading with Lollipops - TEDxToronto
How many of you guys have a lollipop moment, a moment where someone said something or did something that you feel fundamentally made your life better? All right. How many of you have told that person they did it? See, why not? We celebrate birthdays, where all you have to do is not die for 365 days— and yet we let people who have made our lives better walk around without knowing it. And every single one of you, every single one of you has been the catalyst for a lollipop moment. You have made someone's life better by something that you said or that you did, and if you think you haven't,think about all the hands that didn't go back up when I asked that question. You're just one of the people who hasn't been told.
But it is so scary to think of ourselves as that powerful. It can be frightening to think that we can matter that much to other people, because as long as we make leadership something bigger than us, as long as we keep leadership something beyond us, as long as we make it about changing the world, we give ourselves an excuse not to expect it every day from ourselves and from each other.
We need to get over our fear of how extraordinarily powerful we can be in each other's lives. We need to get over it so we can move beyond it, and our little brothers and our little sisters, and one day our kids -- or our kids right now -- can watch and start to value the impact we can have on each other's lives more than money and power and titles and influence. We need to redefine leadership as being about lollipop moments, how many of them we create, how many of them we acknowledge, how many of them we pay forward, and how many of them we say thank you for. Because we've made leadership about changing the world, and there is no world. There's only six billion understandings of it, and if you change one person's understanding of it, one person's understanding of what they're capable of, one person's understanding of how much people care about them, one person's understanding of how powerful an agent for change they can be in this world, you've changed the whole thing. And if we can understand leadership like that, I think if we can redefine leadership like that, I think we can change everything. And it's a simple idea, but I don't think it's a small one, and I want to thank you all so much for letting me share it with you today.