Record amounts of people joined in the Global Climate strike to end the use of fossil fuels on between September 20th and 27th, 2019. It is hard to ignore the significant impact that anxiety and concern for the environment have on our collective mental state.
Political opinion aside, the movement brings forth concepts of personal empowerment.
What is the motivating factor, apart from the science behind these global strikes? We could argue that it’s a fear of an uninhabitable planet if we do not drastically change our carbon emissions. Throughout history, the figures and role models who stood fast in their convictions in bringing people together for the greater good was solely motivated by one factor: Doing the right thing. Motivations like fame, status or monetary gains do not even come into consideration, they are simply a means to an end. True motivation cannot be bought or traded.
What motivates you to act?
What holds you back from taking action?
Values bring people together. The global climate strike values economic and fair environmental practices for everyone. Science supports the fact that marginalized communities, indigenous peoples and developing nations will suffer most under climate change. From all over the world, young people are leading the charge to break down barriers of inequality and racism by restoring basic human rights in the form of clean water, fresh air and sustainable practices in agriculture, manufacturing and tourism.
Describe your value system.
What beliefs have contradicted your value system in the past?
When bad things happen in our lives, one of the first responses is the feeling of being out of control. Emotions of helplessness and anxiety stem from there. The best way to gain back control of our inner world is to take action. Start a guided journal, join a climate strike, become an informed voter or spread awareness. Big or small, actions make a difference.
The global climate strike is an excellent example of people feeling out of control when it comes to decisions made to environmental policies. Feedback from the FridaysForFuture strikes or the global climate strike all have the same message, doing something is better than not doing something.
What do I have control over?
When I feel out of control, I take the following actions to gain back emotional balance ...
In the journey of personal empowerment, one of the biggest challenges is the perceived judgement of others. When Greta Thunberg started the strikes, she was one girl sitting in front of the Swedish Parliamentary Buildings asking for real action on climate change. In early interviews, she said the hardest part was to get one more person to sit with her.
Why do I care what other people think of me?
Who is part of my support system?
Is my truth valued?
Social media has made is very easy for everyone with a WiFi connection to have an opinion. Resiliency is the capacity to bounce back after a setback. When we train our bodies to be healthy and fit, we can recover quickly after an illness. The same holds for our emotional and mental fitness, the ability to be determined in our resolve. Fearlessness, dignity and respect are all ways in which we can train our mindful resilience.
When was the last time I was offended by an opinion?
When last did I offend someone with my own opinion?
The transition from coal and oil to renewable energies like hydro, biomass, wind, solar and geothermal are reaching a tipping point. Whether we like to or not, we transition from the old to the new every single day. We grow up, move, build our futures with all the ups and downs that come with it. On a smaller scale, we transition from lessons that we learned in the past and apply them consciously or subconsciously to current circumstances. Friendships change, relationships shift and we outgrow old habits that no longer serve us. We are always transitioning.
Write down a time that you were resistant to change even though you knew that the outcome would be better.
When do you resist the most?
I best respond to change when ...
Back to the Basics
Numerous scientific and psychological studies have proved that nature has a profound impact on our overall well-being. Nature journaling significantly improves the happiness factor after only doing it for a few weeks.
When we profoundly connect to nature, we reconnect to what we need to survive. Love, compassion, comradery, empathy, community, good memories, healthy bodies and minds, friendship and true connection.
Journaling Prompt: Read the words and, without overthinking, write down the first idea that comes to mind.
Space to grow
It is the responsibility of every person to live with their actions or inactions. Consequences do not escape the pages of history and the actions of today shape the outcome of the future.
Keep Journaling, Keep Growing.