Can we change the future?
I've always been fascinated by the concept of time travel. Yes, I was that kid who was at least a decade too late watching Back to the Future like it was just newly released. Even now, I've found myself watching the new NBC series Timeless, which is definitely saying something when I can't remember the last time I turned on cable TV other than to watch the Olympics or the CrossFit Games.
But why am I and so many others so fascinated by this concept of time travel? I always just attributed it to my brain's fascination with abstract concepts, but really for me, I think it goes much deeper. It's the thought that if even one person was able to step back in time and change one minor thing, the domino effect could majorly change the present. When you really think about it, it sure wouldn't take much to change the entire world as we know it if even one person had the means to step back in time.
On the flipside, an even more overwhelming thought is this. If it would be so easy to change the present by returning to the past, why are we not trying to change the future while we are still in the present? Yes, we all love to talk about our fears and worries regarding the future, but we don't talk too much about how to change it. The fact of the matter is, we change the future every single time we make a choice and then act on that choice. So the question really isn't "can we change the future?" It's "how will we shape the future?" Just as one small change in the past could trickle down and change everything in our present world, so one small action in the present could drastically impact the future. One act of kindness could save the life of someone who's hit rock bottom. Mentoring a troubled teen could mean the difference between a life of purpose or a life ruled by crime and addiction. Every little action, good or bad, will determine the future.
So why is it that we spend so much time worrying about the future and so little time trying to change it? Imagine what would happen if we played one less video game and made one more phone call to a friend who we knew was down. Imagine if we shared one less meaningless post about politics and one more post offering a way for others to make a simple change like giving to a charity or donating a few volunteer hours to a good cause. Imagine if we stopped arguing about our personal values and beliefs and instead let our values and beliefs be shown through our actions.
We really can change the future. In fact, we are changing it, whether we like it or not. The question is, will we purpose in our own lives to change the words we speak and the actions we take to have a positive impact on the world, or will we continue to say we're worried about the future while we sit in complacency not willing to change our ways in the present. Everything we do counts, even when we choose to do nothing. Let's stop talking about it and choose to be the change that we want to see.