Don’t just exist, live!
Waste and Real are heavy words. They carry enormous weight and can be sized up with a variety of fundamentals in our lives. The way forward depends literally upon the genuine and transparent fabric of thought about our existence, lifestyle, work ethics, businesses, communities, habits, practices, and principles. The way we are, the way we bring up our children, the way we foresee our society, and the way we respond to our introspection.
I read a beautiful line by someone, “Own your own story!” It can’t really be put better than these simple four words. Owning our actions is indispensable and has to become a way of survival – to look at today and the future, holistically.
I do believe that the future is circular. As children, we learned that pre-historic man hunted when he needed to. For his clothes, his needs, and his ration. There was no necessity to hoard or to be one-upped. Somewhere down the line we humans lost our sense of direction, and the battle of life became a larger part of our being. I believe the world was on a roll a hundred years ago, and the rat race just became rampant! The linear model of businesses and production since the Industrial Revolution – Take, Make, Waste, has taken a tremendous toll on our natural resources. This model has outgrown its life span, and we as consumers need to seriously look into the havoc this pattern of growth has created. COVID has brought everyone on their knees – from the superpowers to the third world. In fact, the superpowers have taken the brunt much worse even while being in their seat of utmost control. It is quite distressing that it took a pandemic to wake us from a lethargic slumber and make us realize that the concept of treadmill lifestyle and survival of the fittest is passé and totally undesirable. A beautiful existence has to be cohesive, inclusive, circular, meaningful, and holistic. Relevant wealth generation and healthy stakeholder relationships are what the future is about.
We are moving productively towards our roots and where we came up from. A circular way of life requires a lot of brainpower and a broad fabric of thought. Interestingly, the local communities make a larger impact as opposed to big businesses. Walter Stahel coined the concept of ‘Circular Economy’ and made his observations four decades ago, although it is only now we have urgently moved towards a regenerative, restorative, and reusable way of reflecting. The way forward is a drastic lifestyle change and a circular way of producing all that our race requires. And desires!
As entrepreneurs and educated 21st century gentry, we are required to think Real and be Genuine. ‘Smart’ holds a completely different connotation today – someone who creates an environment that respects the worth of natural resources. An individual with a sense of Reality will be the one to adhere to this sensibility. As the smartest beings on this planet, it is up to us to rethink and repurpose, redesign and realign, restart our thinking and promote healthy ecosystems. Home-grown being the new mantra, the trade ought to start narrow rooted at the lower level to make a mark and yet be global. Complete work plans have to regroup and the end-result-change is a definite must.
To sum up, why I believe in the word Genuine, let me put it in a compact sentence. Unless and until we are true to ourselves and own our own stories, we are barking up the wrong tree with huge implications that will take generations to undo and heal. We all have to retrospect, introspect, ponder, and respond. The leaders need to take charge. The schools need to be equipped. I do think our children need to be brought up in a comprehensive world. Do you?
“If it can’t be reduced, reused, repaired, rebuilt, refurbished, resold, recycled or composted, then it should be restricted, redesigned or removed from production” – Pete Seeger-