There has been a lot of backlash and hurt as a result of President Trump’s executive order regarding refugees recently. But, wherever you are on the spectrum of thinking this is “good” or “bad” on a policy level, I wanted to take a minute to remind the tribe at Average Advocate to not forget that we still have influence, even if just on a personal level.


How can I say this with confidence? Because the proof is in the pudding (or pants if you saw the Super Bowl commercial). We have already done so much to help refugees in just the past year!


If you’ve forgotten (like I tend to do), check this out:


How We’ve Helped Refugees:



  • We raised thousands for A21’s anti-trafficking work during Average Advocate’s annual LBD Project:
    • This helped pay for water containers that provided washing space for the most vulnerable refugees while sharing information and explanations on how to not be exploited
    • A sex trafficking refugee victim was rescued during the LBD Project 2016
    • One hundred refugees were freed from a facility where they were being held captive in Greece during LBD Project 2016
    • A human trafficking hotline was marketed in Greece, where trafficking of refugees was an immediate issue during LBD Project 2016


  • With Average Advocate’s project, World Changers United, we bought blankets that were air dropped into a refugee camp in Jordan, unprepared for a freezing winter



  • With World Help Advocates, we helped raise funds for humanitarian aid for refugees throughout the year


  • Some of us signed petitions Average Advocate posted, helping our representatives know how we felt about policy (supposably, representatives just need to hear ten constituents say they care about something before they begin to pay attention)





Inspiring, right? And, many of us ordinary people are still doing these things.


Your Circle of Influence


While life coaching for people in the Average Advocate tribe, sometimes I use an exercise derived from the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. The concept is simple–looking at your circles of concern vs. circle of influence. When you focus on what you are concerned about, your concern grows and you begin to feel more helpless and out of control.


However, when you focus on your circle of influence, your circle of concern shrinks in response to the realization that you have the ability to change things more than you realized you did.


I feel like we can use these circles in our response to the refugee crisis. The concern is huge. This is the largest humanitarian crisis since WWII and it continues to grow. We shouldn’t look away.


But instead of blaming Trump, blaming ISIS, blaming our mothers–and growing our circle of concern we feel we can do nothing about, let’s look at our circle of influence.


You can even do the exercise easily. Draw a circle, and put in it everything you have no control over. Then draw a larger circle around that one, and write everything in it you have influence in–how you talk about the refugee crisis, your attitude toward leaders, how you respond to refugees here, how you view muslims, opportunities you have to give, etc…


So, not only do I want you to be inspired by what we’ve already done together to make a dent in this huge refugee crisis already, but I encourage you to look at your next step.


You have the ability to do something about this horrible situation.  What is in your circle of influence?



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