“I” Is for Impact

By: D. A. Slinkard

We are to the 9th article, and we have come to the letter “I” and our word is “impact.” I have written in the past about having an impact on other people, and I can tell you many people have greatly impacted my life. Mike Allison, my pastor, is someone who comes to my mind when I think about an influential person who has made a huge impact on my life. Not only has he impacted my life, but he has impacted the lives of my wife and my two daughters. Who is someone in your life who has impacted you?

Not everyone is going to have a pastor, and I understand that. It may be a teacher, a coach, or even a neighbor, but we all have someone who has impacted our lives. Sometimes the impact is positive while other times the impact is negative, and unfortunately, we all have people in our lives who have impacted us negatively.  I look back at my days in retail and I had two former bosses who impacted me the most.

One showed me how to be a leader and guide people while the other showed me how not to be a boss. Yes, you read that correctly — one person was a great example of how I should be while the other was an even better example of what I should avoid doing. I can look back now and laugh but the reality is we can learn from everyone.


We also need to pay attention and think about who we are impacting around us. It could be our children, our neighbors, our friends, people in our church, social clubs, etc., but we cannot take for granted the fact we are impacting people around us. The question then becomes — “Are we a good impact or are we a bad impact?” A tough thing to think about is whether or not the people are better off having us in their life or are they worse off?

I would hate to think that I could possibly bring out the worst in someone but we need to see how we are impacting the lives of those around us. Too often we like to blame others for what ultimately are our own downfalls, and this is where we need to take the time and properly reflect upon who we are as individuals. I believe if we focus on being a positive impact on others, we can find a greater success personally in who we are as an individual. The more we try to grow and develop ourselves, the more likely we are to have a lasting positive impact on those around us.

It has always been my goal for someone to eventually think about D.A. Slinkard and say to themselves, “Because of D.A. Slinkard, I did not give up.” I want to be a positive impact in the lives of those around me. I want to be a positive impact on those people I have never truly spoken to. I want to be a positive impact in a world that is filled with so much negativity. We can find success in life, but it takes work to do so. Building a better version of yourself will not be easy but it can be done if you will commit to it.

The only time you will find success before work is in the dictionary. Sadly though, we live in a society that would rather become the next viral sensation versus having some goals and aspirations and working hard to achieve results. What will you do with this article? Is this going to be words you read while passing the time or is this going to be the moment when you decide the impact you want to have on the lives of others?

If you desire to have an impact on others, I want to encourage you to do so in a positive manner and leave out the negativity. We live in a time in which people are searching for hope. We live in a time in which people are searching for answers. We live in a time in which people do not know which way to go. You have the opportunity to greatly impact those around you, but will you? Think about the person you want to be and the impact you want to make. Write down who it is and what you want to achieve and then take the steps to make an impact.

By: D.A. Slinkard

D.A. Slinkard would love your feedback. You can contact him at da.slinkard@gmail.com