I used to think that the first step to ‘Be the change’ is to step out of our comfort zone, but I have been rethinking that in the last couple of days. Perhaps the first step is more about realising the depth of our interconnectedness, not just in our neighbourhoods and communities, but in our cities, our provinces, our countries and, yes, you guessed it, on our planet.
It’s sometimes hard to take ownership of this reality, but it’s essential. I’d recommend taking the time to really reflect on it. I talked about the drop and the ocean in a previous post, and now I have another analogy I’d like to share.
The level of our interconnectedness can be perceived in our driving. A lot of accidents seem to happen because drivers don’t see themselves as part of the huge network that are all the roads in a continent. If all a driver has in mind is getting from point A to point B as fast as possible, then he won’t pay attention to the various signs on the road, be they on road signs or in the way others are driving. So wrapped is the driver in himself that he doesn’t see the car in front of him start pulling ever so slightly to the left, like so many of us do before we turn the blinker on and start changing lanes – and that’s when accidents can happen.
It doesn’t mean that the driver is mean – it’s just that he wasn’t aware.
And I am right back at my iPod generation argument – remember that one?
Another driving example would be bottlenecks. When every driver on the road wants to slip in first into the highway and doesn’t take into consideration the flow of traffic, then he makes the person behind him brake, which makes the person behind him break, which travels in a chain effect and causes many of the traffic problems we all suffer from during rush hour. And I know there are studies that have analysed this phenomenon.
So what does this mean? That perhaps the effect we have on the world around us is more than we have ever imagined possible. And perhaps that means that ultimately, all we will have to do is to drastically change our perception of the world, and that will help humanity take one step forward, all together. Life really is a highway, and we are all driving it all life long.
Cheesy, but I like it.