Anthropocene, Living in the Future’s Past and Daring to Lead

This is a seemingly not-related-to-each-other list of information. Pieces of content I have become aware of in the last 2 weeks. My mind was open and ready to see new things, as it always is when I travel. Come along for this quick recap of an interesting journey!

This morning I woke, a little groggy after 10 hours of sleep. Not bad for a first night back from a long haul flight which encompassed an all nighter. I lived yesterday, October 4, 2018 – twice. First time, waking in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam and then travelling through Narita airport in Japan, to arrive in Vancouver, Canada on the same morning as I left Asia. After snaking my way through the bowels of YVR and the newly organized immigration hall, I enjoyed a beautiful, sunny day in the West Coast of the Pacific Ocean. This second round through time was an endurance test, thanks to the marvel of science.

As I watch the flight statistics onboard a modern airline, tracking our flight path around the earth, I am amazed at many things. The first thing, I took for granted long ago – the miracle of human flight. Then there is the speed of travel, awe-inspiring to be true. Finally the feats of human engineering which has made modern travel the everyday occurrence for so many people. I feel lucky, beyond belief that my life has followed the trajectory which has allowed for this experience.

It is not without costs, both to me and the earth. The long-term effects to human health of traveling by jets might not be truly discovered for years to come. (A Survey of Cognitive and Psychological Factors Effective on Travelling.) I am increasingly aware of my personal cognitive response. I plan for it and allow myself the proper amount of time to recover. The effect to the planet is but one of the many in the anthropocene. (Mirriam-Webster’s definition denotes the first known use of this word to be the year 2000.)

I first learned about the term anthropocene when travelling by car, on our last leg home, from our year away. On a TED radio hour podcast, Guy Roz interviews various experts and then cuts to their words from the TED stage. Always a fascinating look at the myriad of topics which make their way to that platform.

Because I had become aware of the anthropocene, I knew what a movie with that title might be about. 

The cinematography shown in this trailer is fantastic. If for no other reason, than to see what the world looks like from a bird’s eye view, this film will be a delight. The opening, in select cities across Canada on September 28, 2018 is a curious coincidence to another movie project releasing this fall.

Hitting theatres on October 9, 2018, Living in the Future’s Past is a documentary film presented by Jeff Bridges. In this metaphor, we can examine what kind of future we would like to see. As with the idea’s presented by the anthropocene, this film examines the state of the world we live in. With stunning imagery, we can ask ourselves what are we prepared to do in order to preserve the beauty of our natural world? 

Unfortunately, these 2 documentaries are going to watched by the converted. They are preaching to the choir. Those who already believe that the world’s climate is changing are drawn to further evidence in support of that idea. I don’t hold out much hope that these type of films are going to draw in the naysayers and convince them to become environmentalists.

Therein lies the bigger problem. The actions of people who consider themselves to be supporters of a sustainable world. The ordinary folks who recycle and do a myriad of other things which are meant to ‘save the planet’. Those tiny actions, taken by relatively few people are not going to turn the tide quick enough. Yet, if we give into that kind of logic, we really are doomed because nobody takes positive action in despair. Even the smallest of solutions are better than nothing. But how do we collective decide to do something big?

The final piece of content I am eager to consume on my seemingly not-related-to-each-other list is Brené Browns new book, Daring To Lead. In her latest instalment on courage, vulnerability, shame and empathy, 20 years of research is being applied to the place where many of us will spend most of our adult lives – work. To entrench readers in the material, Brené is offering a global-read-along on LinkedIn, starting October 9, 2018. Given how much I enjoyed the art project which she created to support, ‘The Gifts..’, I’m not going to miss this.

The biggest problem I face in my life is not knowing how to action my beliefs. I know I want to lead a life I don’t feel the need to escape from, (for a vacation or otherwise), but how to get there? How do I interrupt a lifetime of conditioned responses? How do I respond to the barrage of negative information being thrown out into the world at lightening speed? How am I to be an example to my children, other than falling back on the established rules and norms? 

I think the problems of the world will be solved when each of us go beyond the tiny actions we are already taking. Yes, recycling is good – but that is such a small solve for the excessive amount of garbage we create. Which leads back to the ridiculous levels of consumption. All that stuff wouldn’t need a place to die in if we didn’t consume it in the first place. Yet, many people feel the only way to be happy is with the pursuit of material possessions. We know the adage is true – money does not buy happiness. 

What Brené Browns research has already taught us is that we are wired for connection. By the experiences we have with other people, we have no choice but to hear their stories. In this exchange of information, is the solution to all our problems. Together, by talking, listening and working, we will arrive at the solutions we seek. If we can collectively ask ‘what is best for each other’, we will engineer the future in a remarkable way. 

It is an exciting month to engage with some interesting information. No matter where you sit on the political or economic spectrum, this is an opportunity to consume something worthwhile. Information which allows you to see the world from another person’s perspective, the very essence of empathy. Then we can ask ourselves, how are we able to serve other people? Once we can do that, it is possible to align our decisions towards the future we really want to manifest. If you are already doing that, bravo! I’m not quite there yet. 

Join me in this creative journey. I am on a mission to start a global movement, focusing on the importance of creativity in our daily lives. Together, let us see where we can take this. I look forward to hearing from you! Please share your thoughts. Feel free to send an email to: #creaspatreat

My creative year:
: : Developing, testing and enjoying a life I don’t need a vacation from while working in an office and commuting on public transit! 
: : This is where my ideas for creaspatreat will come to life. Don’t miss any of it by joining us!
: : Check out new projects on my youtube channel called creative wandering. #dailycreatives

Published books:
: : “Fruitless at 40: Rediscovering My Creative Power

Would you like a free download of….
: : The first chapter from Fruitless at 40 and
: : My tried and true packing list, developed from long-term, around the world travel?
: : Join us!

Daily Creatives Resources:
: : Travel changes a person
: : Consumer anarchy and the Buyerarchy of needs
: : Teach women, invest in a community
: : what do you think it means?
: : Living in stress, moving to relaxation, looking for ikigai

Comments: 1

  • reply
    October 8, 2018

    I follow some very pragmatic environmentalists who are sometimes accused of being ‘naysayers’. Bjorn Lomborg is the first one who comes to mind ( “Rather than starting with the most radical procedures, Lomborg argues that we should first focus our resources on more immediate concerns and asks why the debate over climate change has stifled rational dialogue and killed meaningful dissent.”

    Closer to your home is Blair King ( . “As a pragmatic environmentalist I am deeply saddened. I see the effort of individuals like myself being overwhelmed as progressives have gradually wrest the environmental movement from the hands of environmentalists and scientists and put it in the hands of philosophers, sociologists and political scientists. People who understand little about the complexity of the problems facing us but instead see this as their latest hobby-horse that they can ride to potential political power. – Blair King -“

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