I have been thrilled to the very core by the inspiring words written recently on **Optimism** by two fantastic people.
Optimist No 1 is Alex Steffen – World Changing
Alex starts his important article in Good of 31 December by stressing the seriousness of the world’s current crisis:
“We are at a moment unique in human history, when we are using the planet’s bio-capacity so quickly that we risk a catastrophic collision with ecological reality. Every creature and every biological system on Earth is now dependent, intentionally or unintentionally, on our management. We’ve never been in the position of managing the planet before and we have no idea how to do it.”
But he ends with:
“But there’s another political force growing fast, and that’s the politics of optimism. It’s a politics that says transformation is not just a duty, it’s an amazing opportunity. We might, instead of doing nothing and leaving our kids a ruined planet, decide to build them an awesome future and spend the rest of our lives enjoying it. That’s the choice we wake up to every day now: cynicism or change.”
Optimist No 2 is Paul Bennett – Chief Creative Officer -IDEO
“Creativity, in its purest form, is also about sharing. It is vast, expansive. It is generative and regenerative, personal, emotive, and above all, optimistic. The majority of people putting themselves out there on YouTube and the like are not looking for the one thing that many business people think (or perhaps hope) they are looking for, which is money. They are looking for something much more powerful – to contribute.”
Wow. He goes on…
“In tough times, which no-one would argue we are in right now, designing our way out requires two fundamental things – the collective sense of optimism that we can, and the need to do it together.”
“So here’s my call to action, and the reason why I joined this whole discussion in the first place. I dare you all out there to do the thing that seems most difficult to do right now. Not to panic, tighten, restrain or, worse, look for the magic silver bullet that is going to make you loads of money and solve all your problems in one fell swoop. But to allow collective wisdom to prevail, give something away, and see what you get in return. Assume you do not have to be the sole person answering your problem. Ask everyone, see what you get back. They want to help, to create, to contribute. Make the pie bigger, and your slice will follow.
And above all, be optimistic. I am.”
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