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Influence: Understanding the true meaning

By Julie Ann

September 11, 2023

There have been a few articles on the word influence, so I wanted to continue this theme to really help people understand what influence is, because there’s a lot of misunderstandings about the word.

I’ve been really fascinated by this word influence, because my publishing company is called Influence Publishing, my retreat center is called House of Influence, and I’ve already done a few books in Vancouver around that topic of women of influence.

We can really help people to understand that that there is a difference between manipulative influence where people have tactics which are trying to convince you to buy this product or this service, and responsible influence that uplifts and empowers and creates positive impact.


Women of Influence Book


The book that we will be publishing with Influence Publishing is going to feature 15 Women of Influence in Puerto Vallarta who are telling an authentic story that reflects their power of persuasion to create positive impact through their actions of listening to the needs of their community with empathy and genuine interest.  These stories will demonstrate the empowering way they impact   from that place where they want to help people.

These women are influencing people to see things in a different way. And that is exactly what TED and TEDx does with their talks. Tedx is all about a topic that starts a thousand conversations. Their values are to choose topics that give a different perspective, to influence the audience to start talking.

My own TEDx talk I gave in 2016 is a good example of this. My title was the Gift of Dyslexia. My goal was to influence the way people perceive dyslexia as a disability. link

One of the Women of Influence in this book is Christy Annis and the influence she has to help people to understand Lymes disease, and what treatment options are available outside of pharmaceuticals. She empowers women to consider all the options for treatment including the relationship between the mind, body, and the soul.


RISE orphanage influencing children


The book retail sales will be donated to RISE orphanage, and Lisa Manoogian will be sharing her story of starting this project because she realized nobody was caring for the children that have homes, but in a bad situation. They’re in a family, but they’re being abused, or they’re being left by themselves all day. There’s a lot of young mums in Mexico with no support.

Lisa is influencing the way that we look at children and giving them the opportunity of loving support and a good upbringing. She saw that there’s so many children that must stay in a bad situation in a bad home, because there’s nowhere for them to go. There is no government orphanage system here.

So, volunteers at the orphanage because she wanted to give these kids the best start in life they could possibly have. And when I went to see her at the at the orphanage, I said this is the kind of influence that I’m talking about. She’s influencing those children to have a good start in life.


You may also like: Hospiten Puerto Vallarta’s Visit to the RISE Foundation: Promoting Health through Learning


All the kids that are in the orphanage are learning English as well as Spanish, and what that means is, by the time they’re 11 years old they can go to the English school because she’s influencing the English school and saying, Hey, you know what these kids deserve a chance, and we’ve taught them English so that they can go to your English school, and she gets scholarships for those kids.

And that’s the kind of Influence I’m talking about. She’s influencing the kids’ life. She’s influencing the other schools so that they can take these children. She’s using her power of persuasion to create a positive impact.


Creating an impact in your community


Some of the other women that are getting involved are creating impact in their communities.  Laura and Erin of the women’s networking group went out of their way to bring women together to collaborate and support one another.

Laura said to me, “I don’t consider myself an influencer,” and I said “how can you say that you don’t consider yourself an influencer. Look what you did on Thursday night, you brought 60 women together and the joy was obvious in the room. Some of them are single moms, some of them are struggling to get started with their businesses, and they come together, and they connect, and they collaborate. That certainly makes you an influencer because you are helping all these other women come together to help one another. I need to help people understand so we can feature their stories.”


Hand of puppeteer on dark background

It is not about manipulation


We are not looking for women of influence that are just manipulating people, and that they’re in this for power. You know we are looking for the women truly of service. I just feel like when women like this come together, we can help one another.

Jessie, the host of Asphalt radio show did an interview on Saturday talking about the book, and she said “I can’t wait to interview every woman that’s in the book,” because she knows that I bring people to be interviewed that have got amazing stories.




There is a trend right now called de influencing.

The trend is helping people to understand a genuine authentic influence. It’s almost like the opposite, bringing awareness to the manipulative influencers. They warn to avoid this insurance company, avoid this realtor term, avoid this product or service, influencing people to make the right choices.

It’s important for us to use the word influence, and spread the word. This is what influence is. Influence should empower and uplift and comes from your actions, intentions and values.

Do you take a genuine interest in your community? Do you listen with empathy to see how you can help? Are you making a positive impact with your power of persuasion? Are you a Woman of Influence? We want your story!

 I’m really looking forward to the connections and the collaborations of these women who are influencing for the good. It’s going to be magical. I’m really looking forward every time I have a group like this.

It’s so heartwarming to see how these women all connect, because when they are coming from that place of influence, authentic and in service to other women, they can co-create real positive impact for Puerto Vallarta!


This will be a weekly column where we will be inspiring writers and featuring local authors that live in Puerto Vallarta.  We will be giving you an inside look at the purpose of their writing and how they crafted their story to have an impact on their readers.


Julie Ann is the founder of Influence Publishing Inc, corporation from Vancouver, Canada.  She has lived in Puerto Vallarta for 5 years and is the owner of the Mexican Corporation, Casa de Influencia S.A. de C.V. which is a retreat and event center based in Old Town, Puerto Vallarta.  She hosts writing retreats and writing classes at the center. Opportunities to be a contributing author in one of the many Anthology book projects she is publishing can be found at www.casadeinfluencia.com





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