Posted by: barbaraneill | October 12, 2016

How one small action saved thousands of lives.

Have you ever wished you could make a positive difference but felt overwhelmed by the situation you are facing?

You wouldn’t be the first and you certainly wouldn’t be the last. World peace, for example, is something many of us would love to see but there is so much that’s wrong with our world at the moment it seems virtually impossible to achieve. I believe it IS possible if we chip away at some of the difficulties faced by our fellow beings, (which includes other animals as well as humans, incidentally). Just to prove it’s possible to make a huge, positive difference with just one small action I’m going to tell you about something that happened when I was a teenager, back in the seventies.

I was working in an office at the time and it was the morning after I had seen a particularly harrowing news item about the famine in Ethiopia and the devastating effects it was having. Most of my friends and colleagues had seen it too and we were all talking about it. Of course, talking about it wasn’t going to change anything and I knew that. I wanted to make a difference; to help in some way that would alleviate the suffering of as many of those people in Ethiopia as possible, and I expressed this to one of my friends who also felt powerless. What we needed to do, we decided, was to contact someone who wasn’t powerless; someone who really would have enough clout to improve the quality of life for the people in Ethiopia. We decided to contact the editor of our local newspaper, The Kent Messenger, and ask for a meeting with the editor which, to our delight, we were granted. We had a very positive meeting and, as a result, a public meeting was set up in our local town centre, with special guest Gordon Honeycombe, a well-known newsreader. The public meeting was well attended and, as a consequence, the Kent Messenger Ethiopia Appeal Fund was launched.

The appeal fund ran as a regular feature in the Kent Messenger for about six months and local businesses, schools and other organisations were happy to get on board with various fund-raising initiatives. The proceeds were sent to Ethiopia via major humanitarian charities and, some years later when I enquired as to how many lives would have been saved thanks to the Kent Messenger Ethiopia Appeal Fund, I was told it was approximately three thousand!

Just to be clear, it cost my friend and me nothing to arrange that first meeting with the editor of The Kent Messenger. It was very fortunate that he was on board with our idea straight away but, believe me, if he hadn’t been receptive we wouldn’t have given up until we’d found someone who was.

We attended a couple of meetings and, once the ball had started rolling, the enthusiasm of other people was sparked and the appeal gathered pace quickly, so we really didn’t need to do any more. That’s all it took for us to make such a massive difference; a couple of meetings and just a few hours of our time.

Add to the three thousand people whose lives were saved, the number of people who would have benefited in some way as a consequence of those lives having been saved and the result is mind-blowing.

If you have an idea or the passion to make huge changes, don’t give in to being overwhelmed. Although whatever you’re facing may seem too much for you to cope with, there may be others who would willingly help. All it need take is one small action and the confidence to make it happen.

As a professional hypnotherapist, (and daughter of Bob Neill, one of the first hypnotherapists in the UK), I can help you to gain confidence and take the action you need to make those positive changes in YOUR life.


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