From September 21-22, 2014, I was at the Social Good Summit, organized by: Mashable, UN Foundation, UNDP, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and 92&Y. Being around incredible individuals from all backgrounds was inspiring. Each presentation left me with new facts, and new incentives on why I am needed in the fight for a better world. There were five lessons that I took away. I want to share them with you. To inspire and encourage you to make a difference in your community.
You and me are fundamentally designed to FEEL first. Our Right brain helps us feel connected to energy and the people around us. Our Left brain helps us make decisions by categorizing all the information we receive. The world we have constructed favors our Left brain, to make decisions, to separate ourselves from others, and to be ‘right’. Our entire relationship with the world is based on how our amygdala is stimulated. Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor discusses how we have the power to choose what world we want to see – the decision is within us. Watch her video from the Social Good Summit.
When you fear a new situation, a person from a different background or tasting a dish prepared from same basic ingredients, but in a new way, you miss out on life’s valuable experiences. Instead of enriching your world, expanding your knowledge and enjoying the diversity around us, you remain stagnant. And nothing stagnant in life can survive. Change is hard, change is difficult, change requires commitment, and change is best done with others. But fear, it is a poison that we drink in the thought that it is a medicine that will help us, when all it does is paralyze. Here is a song for you dear reader, to break the chains of fear and embrace your own power! Be proud for wanting to shape your world! Thank you Natasha Bedingfield!
One person can’t change the world, because the world is filled with 7 billion. Yet, what one person can do is inspire others. To do that, they must establish themselves as someone worth knowing and learning from. To do this, we must collaborate and share our knowledge. There are things that you are an expert of, that another person isn’t. But there are many things that you don’t know, which will take you years upon years to learn or discover, unless someone is willing to explain you the basics in a matter of minutes. Collaborate, share and inspire others to be the change. That’s what our responsibility is! And that’s exactly how these young talents reached their success! Hugh Evans, Caitlin Crosby, and Kweku Mandela.
How does a plant feel? How does a butterfly struggle when it’s wings are wet? Why does an ant work so hard for its family? I have no answers to these questions because I don’t know how to put myself in their shoes. Since we compare and relate all the information given to us with our own experiences, it is difficult for us to relate to things we aren’t familiar with. But what helps is story telling. If we hear a story in which the plant, the butterfly and the ant are given human characteristics, and go through challenges we faced in our own life, we are able to put ourselves in their shoes. We become more understanding of their struggles. Conservation International and Edward Norton, along with other incredible actors, gave us such a story – Nature is Speaking. Now, we can know what water, soil and all other Earth’s elements are trying to say. Ready to listen?
The planet doesn’t need saving, humans need saving! Our way of life is in jeopardy, and this struggle is about humans coexisting with nature. There are no jobs, no living on a dead planet, at least not for us. Organization and companies of all sorts have realized that our time for preserving our life here on Earth is running out. Even the Rockefellers will divest from fossil fuels! But the carbon particles we meant to stop at 350 have risen to 400! Executive Director of Greenpeace International, Kumi Naidoo, said it best: “Nothing that we can tell them [world leaders and organizations], they don’t know. Nothing that we can tell them, their own scientists don’t know. The time for words is over!”. What are you willing to do, to preserve your life on this beautiful world?
I hope you found these lessons useful! If there is something you want to add, or share, feel free to do so in the comments.