How to Become a MAD Person: Someone Who Makes a Difference

By Julie Miles Lewis

There are lots of things in the world that we would like to change! Although tackling them can seem like a daunting task, there are plenty of ways we can make a difference in our daily life and in the lives of others, so let’s take a look at how!

However grand and dramatic it might sound, wanting to “change the world” is a great way to add more meaning to your life, impact others and, in some cases, leave a lasting legacy. Despite this, there is often a tendency to remain passive, assuming that change cannot take place, or to believe: “I am not the right person or experienced enough to instigate it.” These are limiting beliefs that need to be crushed!

Now let’s consider how to make a difference. A good start is to look at where your interests, passions and values lie and explore how you can match them to the needs of the world.

That’s exactly what I did when I launched Mountain High in 2003. I came up with the concept of LOVE as an acronym for Lots Of Valuable Experiences. The mission was, and still is, to offer LOVE (Lots of Valuable Experiences) to people by speaking about and offering travel expeditions, retreats and workshops. Add MAD (Making a Difference) to the equation and you get MAD LOVE (Making a Difference through Lots of Valuable Experiences.)

Over the years, Mountain High expeditions has offered participants the opportunity to raise funds and draw awareness and media attention to several women’s health campaigns and various educational projects. It’s a win-win situation when you get to travel, connect with new cultures, support local tourism and raise awareness and funds for causes close to your heart!

No one person can solve all the world’s problems, yet you can make the world a better place by offering your time, skills, energy and resources.

Giving back allows you to temporarily escape from the “rat race” and experience a different life. It can lead you on to something you might never have thought about before.

Giving back is the flipside of receiving all the love, goodness, blessings and new ideas in your own life. If someone wants to pay the lunch bill, let him! Doing so allows that person the pleasure of giving. Start to acknowledge that what you give comes flowing back to you in some form or other. By giving and receiving, you open the doors to a constant flow of energy. The fastest way to attract something is to give it.

“No one has ever become poor by giving.”—Anne Frank

Next time you see or hear about something that bothers you, and you find yourself thinking, “Someone should do something about that,” that somebody is likely YOU.

You don’t have to have a university degree—or be Bill Gates or Mother Theresa—to make a difference. A smile, a hug, a wave, or a listening ear can make a difference in someone’s day. Start practicing random acts of kindness and giving your TLT (Time Love and Tenderness).

  • Giving and Receiving Feels Good!
  • Feeling Good Feels Good!
  • Here are some simple ways to make a difference:
  • Share your talents!
  • Donate your unwanted clothes, shoes, books, etc.
  • Smile.
  • Take toys, games, unwanted gifts, etc., to a nursery or children’s ward.
  • When it’s your birthday or a holiday, give a gift to someone in need.
  • Give your old sports equipment to the local park.
  • Bake cakes and sell them. Then donate the funds to a charity of your choice.
  • Help out at an animal shelter.
  • Volunteer your time to help others.
  • Speak kind words—they make such a big difference!
  • Recycle.
  • Take part in a beach/park cleanup.
  • Plant a tree—plant lots of them!
  • Start a community sports program.
  • Turn off the TV and go play with your kids.
  • Practice random acts of kindness.
  • Lead by example and become a role model for change.
  • Launch community events.
  • Make care packages to give to laborers.
  • Lend others a hand when you see them struggling.

“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson


Julie Miles Lewis is a speaker, the author of Moving Mountains, and the founder of Mountain High and Jules Lewis Consulting. For more information, visit and



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