2020 is a year that will change the world forever. What started off as a new decade full of potential and excitement rapidly turned into a time of heightened anxiety, fear and awareness. All of the events happening around the world are not random, they are intertwined and related to each other. From the rise of Black Lives Matter to Coronavirus and Sustainability, each of these movements have transformed the world for generations to come.
- knowledge or perception of a situation or fact.
- concern about and well-informed interest in a particular situation or development.
What sounds like a positive word, “awareness”, can drive immense pain being felt around the world. Coronavirus has driven the world to a halt, slowing down economic growth and stopping our daily routines right in their tracks forcing individuals to hit the pause button, unsure when life can be restarted back again. Forcing individuals and communities to become more aware than ever before.
During this time we are all staying in our homes spending time with our family or roommates, learning new recipes, watching more Netflix than ever but more than anything we are forced to spend time with ourselves. We can’t run to work or the bar or a friend’s house to hide from ourselves, our thoughts, concerns and realities.
We have to sit in the present moment and become more aware than ever of the world we have created for ourselves.
A world full of motion, injustice, impatience, imperfections, greed and fear. A world also full of innovation, love, motivation, resilience and hope. The awareness of this world we have all taken part in creating is thrusting individuals who didn’t want to “cause a fuss” to come out of hiding and scream for what they believe in, what they want to see and build; a better world.
The pleasure principle is a well known and frankly obvious term originally used by Sigmund Freud to describe the tendency of people to seek pleasure and avoid pain. This principle has been one of the driving forces behind the delay of the rise of both Sustainability and the Black Lives Matter movement.
Those of us who are not directly affected by climate change and racism have been able to push aside these deeply rooted issues to the back on our minds while keeping up with daily lives. Instead of embracing the painful past, present and future caused by climate change and racism to invoke real change many people simply pushed forward uploading a social media post or two to show support while continuing with our work, family and social life.
Both Sustainability and the Black Lives Matter movements call out and bring awareness to deeply rooted problems that span the distance of the globe across many generations. The amount of pain these two issues have caused cannot be measured and continues to be felt every minute of every day.
The solutions are not easy, quick or clear, which create even more pain not being able to take immediate action against these issues we care so much about. Often times we feel we aren’t in control of the solutions, that we must wait and depend on the government or companies to come up with a magical solution.
Time to Take Action
What Coronavirus has done is force us to pay attention to these issues that we can no longer put on the back burner and avoid.
We are all part of the problem and we all must be part of the solution.
From protests spreading across the world demanding justice and change to social media shutting down focusing all attention to the Black Lives Matter Movement, the push from every individual has started to achieve results but the fight is far from over.
The most important thing you can do to take action against racism and climate change? Continue the conversation bringing attention to these issues with your friends and family, through social media, learning more about these problems, joining protests and using your money as your vote to build a better world supporting businesses that reflect your values around equality and sustainability.
Do you want to find more ways to take action? Here are some lists of things you can do right now:
- 10 Best Ways to Combat Climate Change, Experts Say
- Here’s How You Can Take a Stand For George Floyd Right Now
- 8 Everyday Ways to Fight Racism
- Beyond Protests: 5 More Ways To Channel Anger Into Action To Fight Racism
- Top 10 things you can do about climate change
Don’t forget to check out our blog post “Sustainability During a Pandemic: Caring for the Planet While Staying Safe”!