On Influence and Resources


“We get almost all our wonders second hand.” ― Mark Twain

Influence requires resources. Whether you are seeking to promote positive change in your world, your neighborhood, or your family, fuel is required.

This is a natural law of physics—a body in straight line motion will stay in straight line motion unless acted on by an outside force.

Similarly, this appears to be the natural law of society—culture will continue on its current trajectory unless a new influence begins to change the direction of its existing path.

But this new influence must always find its source somewhere. It will always require the spending of resources.

Unfortunately, too many make the mistake of equating resources solely with money. Now, don’t get me wrong, money is a valuable resource for influence—anyone who has ever followed a political campaign can recognize that truth. But money is not our only resource available for influence.

We can also change the trajectory of our world by directing our time, energy, creativity, intelligence, willpower, and/or skill set towards the change we’d like to see. Influence requires fuel, but that fuel can come from any number of sources. And each of us are equipped with many.

One of the greatest benefits of minimalism I have seen in my life is the opportunity to redirect my life’s resources. By removing the pursuit of physical possessions, my financial resources have been freed to pursue influence of higher worth. And by removing the distraction of physical possessions, I have discovered even more resources (time, money, energy, mental capacity) to direct elsewhere.

My hope is that these newfound resources will be spent towards positive influence and positive change in our world. May each of us do the same.

Joshua Becker

About Joshua Becker

Writer. Inspiring others to live more by owning less.
Bestselling author of Simplify & Clutterfree with Kids.

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  1. says

    Brilliant observation. Count me in. “God speaks in the silence of the heart, and we listen. And then we speak to God from the fullness of our heart, and God listens. And this listening and this speaking is what prayer is meant to be….”
    – Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

  2. says

    I have noticed this in many ways to but you have put it so eloquently. I used to do everything big, like the laundry. And those monster loads were torture — although I thought I was getting the most out of my resources. But the time drain and drudgery of dealing with heaps of clothes was a killer. Now I I smaller/medium sized loads and don’t feel overwhelmed and can breeze through them without feeling like I’m killing myself. It also helps that having less clothes means you don’t let them pile up dirty for two weeks at a time! But having less means working with less and that can be quite liberating in so many ways.

  3. says

    I am completely with you. It took me a long time to defy consumerism, but now that I have little want for “things”, I can divert my precious life energy toward things that truly speak to my soul. Thank you for these amazing posts.

  4. T. James says

    I feel truly blessed to have stumbled on this, this opportunity in my 30s to change my life in such an applicable and measurable way. I’ve shed so many things that I once valued, and I don’t miss a single one of them.

    Thanks for the inspiring words.

  5. lynne says

    Really great read.. I am getting there. I have enough things and I do not need anymore. But last week I had to talk myself out of buying a very fancy waffle iron. It just goes to show how my mind is programmed to just buy.

  6. says

    My parents are always telling me that in order to make a big difference in the world, you need to have lots of money. Look at the Bill Gates and Warren Buffets of the world. They have billions that they spend on charitable work every year. What could I do compared to them? But in my mind, every individual on this planet can do something. Any little thing that serves to improve the planet done by a million people can result in a major movement. That’s why the minimalism movement has taken off as it has, because it is a lot of people making small changes. Thanks for the post!

  7. everlearning says

    Thank you, Joshua. Excellent piece today. My life has changed dramatically since a friend introduced me to your website. Fabulous insights and wisdom for positive change in my life and in the world! I still have lots of work to do, but I’m on the journey! THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!

  8. Annie says

    “And by removing the distraction of physical possessions, I have discovered even more resources (time, money, energy, mental capacity) to direct elsewhere.”

    I couldn’t agree more. One of the things I wish people would realize if that if they stop wasting so much money on possessions they could use it to educate themselves or help others through scholarship programs or donations to libraries. Education is the gateway to a better life.

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