“We just need more hands.”
“It’s a magnificent thing to be alive in a moment that matters so much,” Texas Tech University climate scientist Dr. Katharine Hayhoe shared in a recent interview and article featured in National Geographic magazine.
It certainly is a roller coaster time to be alive, as nearly everyone and everything on our home planet struggles with myriad challenges and changes magnified by what humanity has thrown at it over the years.
We sense, feel and know on a palpable level that things can be better, but paths and trails leading from where we are to the place we’re envisioning remain about as clear as mud. For many people, heightened uncertainty and feeling unmoored from familiar landmarks leads to even greater struggle, apathy, and despair, and more short-sighted, self-centered behavior.
Yet that’s not really who we are as human beings at our best, but how can we move from feeling stuck to taking action?
A few suggestions…
Delve into the wellspring of gumption and wisdom of previous generations who worked together to overcome serious challenges they faced in their lifetimes.
Let’s also get out of the way and make room at the table for younger generations worldwide to co-create their collective vision of a more just, inclusive and sustainable planet. As Albert Einstein observed, “We cannot solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them.”
During the first half of the 20th century, my late parents’ and grandparents’ generation navigated a decade-plus long economic depression. As teenagers and young adults, my mom and dad lived through a brutal, all-consuming second world war persisting for four years in terms of direct U.S. involvement, and for nearly six years in much of the world. My dad was just 17 when we learned that one of his older brothers had been killed in Belgium in late 1944.
The present moment calls us to join together, to change, adapt, and live in greater harmony with our environment and each other.
This has never been an easy feat to accomplish in any era, yet the arrival of 2022 presents us with a fresh opportunity to review our past so we may create a better today and future.
It’s a welcome time to acknowledge what’s working and not working well, to make necessary changes, and take action to move to where you intend to be.
It’s also worth reflecting upon times you successfully made significant changes in your life in response to challenges, and how you transformed into opportunities what first might have been perceived as obstacles, dead ends, roadblocks or setbacks.
Life always finds a way. And so must we.
Inspirational stories abound of ordinary human beings who’ve found a way to move forward and make the world a better place for all, so find a few good reads to help you stay laser focused on what’s possible instead of what’s wrong.
I may be going out on a limb here, but perhaps what these people have all had in common is a resilient, inexhaustible reservoir of hope, no matter what.
As Jane Goodall shared: “I do have reasons for hope: our clever brains, the resilience of nature, the indomitable human spirit, and above all, the commitment of young people when they’re empowered to take action.”
Young, old, or in between, let’s all keep taking inspired, hopeful action to make our surroundings and world a better place, no matter where our feet are.