Our sphere of influence.
Do we know, realize, or even care about the people around us who are directly or indirectly influenced by our actions? Something as simple as an angry gesture or honking your horn while driving. What does the recipient of those actions carry forth with them on the rest of the drive, or when they get home?
The people we have met, through any function or event, casual or formal, take a part of us with them for the rest of their life. While we cannot control how they consume and use that information, we have complete control over our influence, and the impression we make upon them.
Is this what life is about, and the community we are all a part of? Our sphere of influence is not just the immediate people and space, but it extends through each living being, through the universe, back to the source, and circles back toward ourselves. Perhaps this is karma? Our actions coming back to bite us in the ass. The number of people affected by the actions, determines how long it takes for the end result to manifest that we will experience. More people, a larger sphere of influence, the longer we sit and stew, waiting for something to happen.
The karma can be subtle, and to the people who are not aware, an event perceived as bad, adverse, or negative will not be related back to the original event.
Awareness is the key to not making the mistakes in the first place and setting off a chain reaction or karma, but when things do happen, being aware of the sphere of influence, and not repeating the mistakes.