Recently, Ronald invited me to write a blog post on transition, from my perspective as an urban entrepreneur / change manager. What do I think about, regarding transition, what do I see? Well, a lot. From my perspective, we live in exiting times, with a lot of major social and environmental issues. One of these issues, on which companies as well as politics increasingly recognise the need to act on, is CO2 emission. The goals are clear and ambitious, action is needed and we all play our role in it.
I’ve been working in the field of sustainability for over 10 years and am happy to see the growing interest in it. Climate change is on the political agenda. We’ve had big conferences in which leaders gather and speak about it, trying to make agreements. Where companies used to think about corporate social responsibility as a side issue, they now more and more discover the business opportunities, integrating sustainability in the core business. For a lot of starting entrepreneurs, sustainability is a normal way of working. And this movement will inevitably grow. But, will this all be enough to solve our environmental problems? And what role do we play, from an individual point of view?
My personal experience is that those major questions got so big in my mind that the tendency was first to pull back from it, placing it outside myself. Then, there was a phase when I started to integrate it in my personal life, conciously taking daily desicions on how to move, what to buy. During the start of that phase, I often felt guilty for using recourses, or for not doing ‘the right thing’. For example when taking the airplane to enjoy holidays. How could I take the airplane, while valuing sustainability and knowing the ecological impact of this action? The more aware I became, the more paradoxes I faced.
Now, I’m in the phase that I think we’ll have to deal with this kind of paradoxes. You can’t withdraw from society, we all need each other. You can’t do everything ‘right’ (fully ecological), because we’re not that far as a society and we can’t stop moving, eating, working. And sometimes other values are more important to you. And I think that’s oke. We all make our personal decisions.
What I think, the real challenge is, is for us to live consciously and pure, questioning ourselves about the impact of our actions on people and planet. Taking daily decisions, using the knowlegde and values we have. And not to let ourselves down or feel guilty because we don’t do everything right. Everyday is a new day to make new decisions. We learn from our experiences. Sometimes fast, sometimes real slow. But I believe more and more people setting personal intentions to be conscious and to live pure, will lead to Better Lives and a Better Future for us all. What’s your personal intention?