On the Coast #Families  – February March 2020

2040 – Fact-based dreaming to create a better future.

Over the summer holidays our family became a bit fatigued at the stress of the bushfire emergency, the unrelenting news coverage and its link to the real climate emergency our planet is now facing.  It was distressing watching the devastation, the damage to communities, homes, country and wildlife. I could feel it beginning to take its toll on the mood of our family and we weren’t alone.

The fear is real.  Many people were expressing to me their anxiety, helplessness and stress.

Fear can create paralysis.  Chronic fear and helplessness can slump us into overwhelm and feel like there is nothing we can do and helpless.  It is our natural stress response in action – fight, flight or freeze.

As a result, we have find ourselves in one of three camps – ‘Fighters’ calling for action, even rebellion, the Flighters (or deniers clinging onto old thinking), and the Freezers, who understand what is happening but are unable to move into action.

Which one are you?

I am one of the believers that know it is time to act now to reduce, renew, regenerate and reverse the climate but for a while, I think I have been on ‘freeze’ mode, immobilised by the enormity of the task and fear for the future.

In the area of climate action, the recent and dominant conversation has been one of fear, and those images of a burning Australia were mighty scary.  Every kid I talk to is worried about the environment and the future they will inherit.  The time for fear now must end if we are going to get action. It is time to bring new ideas to the discussion through creative and collaborative thinking motivated for solutions.

It is time for hope.  And I have just the place for each family to start.

As a way to address our feelings of anxiety and do something useful my family and a bunch of friends with their kids watched the movie call 2040.  It’s a ‘love letter’ from a father to his 5year old daughter, using a process of ‘fact-based dreaming’, to envisage for her the world she could inherit by the time she was 25years old if people and communities began to make some simple changes to regenerate the planet and our improve our way of life.

All the solutions he discovered currently exist already now as proven technologies – such as electric cars, solar mini-grids, kelp farming, an increased plant-based diet and carbon capturing soil in farming for a start. The most surprising and moving solution covered was the simple truth of the role that empowering and educating girls around the world plays for making the planet a better place.

The 2040 of the future envisioned using fact-based dreaming looked exciting, healthy and in harmony with nature. It just takes action on these solutions (and others) beginning within communities, and then spreading across the country and hopefully growing on a global scale.

Nothing can exist in reality unless it has been dreamed up first. Are we going to bring in the future of our current nightmares? NO!  Enough indulging in that.

We need to arrest the fear long enough to allow us to begin dreaming again of a better future. We need to dream in a better alternative.

We need to rest and soothe our brains out of fight/flight or freeze mode long enough for these new ideas and possibilities to take seed and germinate imaginal cells (the building blocks in biology for transformation) to create action and tangible change.

I encourage every family, and every school, to watch this movie.  There is a website where you can access the film and a whole bunch of resources to help you activate your own plan where you can begin to make meaningful and tangible changes for a better world.

Start dreaming up today in 2020 a wonderful 2040!

Check out whatsyour2040.com