Inner / Outer
If we want to change the world, we must first change the way in which people think and feel about the world
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Thinkers360: Sustainability Prediction
I was honoured to be invited by Thinkers360 to provide a sustainability prediction for 2023. A chance to place a regenerative voice and message in the world of corporate sustainability thinkers.
2022 has been a climate wake-up around the world, we saw more and more climatic events and have become acutely aware that we are on the cusp of a future that can be irreversibly disastrous or regeneratively wonderful. As we move into 2023, our relationships and connectivity with our natural world need to deepen and to surface in nature-based climate solutions. And in doing so, to work to co-create conditions that will allow all life to flourish and thrive.
We need a shift in mindsets, seeking potentials and solutions, not barriers or placing band-aid fixes on problems we have failed to solve for decades. Giving ourselves and each other the time and space to ask better questions and understand how each decision and action is either degenerative or regenerative. This means not only questioning and changing the ‘outer’ (the what we do), but also seeking to change the ‘inner’, our mindsets, behaviours and how we, and our organisations, show up in the world. We all have agency in making 2023 that tipping point for a future where we thrive and co-evolve with the living systems upon which we depend.
Solitaire Townsend asked a great question on linkedin recently
Solitaire: “I'm editing my new book, The Solutionists, right now - and I need your help please! If you've read business books about #sustainability #ESG #climateaction#socialimpact #purposedrivenbusiness - what surprised you that the authors missed out” Like everyone, I have blind spots and biases. My editor and beta readers will help. But in this network, brilliant brains like yours have likely spent (combined) millions of hours reading these books.
So please let me know, what is missing from what you've read?
Me: Sustainability business books have in large focused on the why, the what to do and how - and that hasn’t moved climate action in the right direction. What’s missing? - the ‘inner’ sustainable / regenerative ’self’ - what we bring as individuals (and then frameworks / standards/ checklists become somewhat redundant) - and this links to another missing element - the indigenous wisdom of those who had/have far better relationships with the earth
ST: Thank you Martin - that's entirely my premise with the book! Looking into the person behind the purpose.
If we want to change the world …
And again on Linkedin, Julie Hirigoyen (CEO UKGBC) introducing a new UKGBC Leadership Course raised the same issue.
If we want to change the world, we must first change the way in which people think and feel about the world. We need to tap into their human qualities - emotions, dreams and fears, strengths and vulnerabilities. We see leadership development as central to meeting the scale of the challenge ahead of us precisely because of that mindset shift required.
What’s needed is a mindset shift.
Christina Figueres, writing in the Guardian … “The major challenge in front of us is not technical or financial. What’s needed is a mindset shift. Yet changing mindsets is not mentioned in many of the excellent climate action and nature conservation roadmaps that leaders consult. It’s time we called that out. Sticking with the idea that the self-serving use of common resources is inevitable or irreversible, at a time in which deep, systemic collaboration is called for, will not deliver good results.
This is the essence of our Regenerative Playbook, in that its not what we do, what checklist we follow and which spreadsheets we use, but the inner regenerative self, who we are and how we show up in our world.
working not only to change ‘out there’ but also to change ‘in here’, our own mindsets and behaviours,
Regenerative : But what does this mean? As (the regenerative) playbook shows, it means asking different and better questions, ones which can help us to recognise and work with the true interdependencies of our living world; it means nurturing the potential that all people and communities already have to be sources of health for all life on earth and giving that potential space to grow and be realised; and it means working not only to change ‘out there’ but also to change ‘in here’, our own mindsets and behaviours, and those of our organisations. The Regenerative Playbook.
And it’s about who we are - how we show up in the world, finding the time and space for our own nourishment (like meditations or quiet time in nature) and how we nurture and are nurtured.
We will not really be able to move forward with solutions, provide nourishment and encouragement for others, if we ourselves are too busy to give ourselves time and space
Zoom Regenerative at 50
Yes, we have reached ZR 50 - the fiftieth edition will be on 15th November. One of the founding inspirations back in April 2020, at the start of the lockdown, was the wonderful quotation from Arundhati Roy.
The Pandemic is a Portal: ‘We can choose to walk through it, dragging the carcasses of our prejudice and hatred, or avarice, our data banks and dead ideas… Or we can walk through lightly, with little luggage, ready to imagine another world. And ready to fight for it.’
Will there be cake, fizz, gifts, announcements?
Delighted to announce that we are taking a Storms and Starlights themed session to COP27 in Egypt. With a similar session to the one we took to COP26 in Glasgow last year, we will be at the Action Hub in the Blue zone on the 11th November at 2pm (12 noon UK). There will be a webcast.
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