Mindset for change makers

Reminder for myself and all change makers who are (sometimes) too passionate.

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Reminder for myself and all change makers who are (sometimes) too passionate.

In 2 weeks, I will be part of the UNLEASH founding class: 1000 young individuals aged 20 to 35, brought together for 10 days, to work on achieving the sustainable development goals.

The perspective of working with 1000 passionate individuals from all over the world is exciting: activists, entrepreneurs, researchers, basically change makers of all kinds. I’m excited, and also a little worried. I know activists and entrepreneurs as well as I know myself: we put so much in our projects, in our fights, that it can be very very intense. It also makes it hard to keep things in perspective. Sometimes I even feel like the more personally involved we are, the more difficult it is to stay open-minded to others’ perspectives.

Sooo… before we all get carried away in the specifics of each project let’s say it aloud one more time: “We all share the same objective. We all want a better future. There is no hierarchy in our fights.”

Maybe it is harder to disagree with someone who is supposedly “in the same team” because it can feel like treason. I feel like I’ve had these discussions many times in one way or the other : “How can you be a feminist and care less about the planet? It’s our future and where we live.” me on the other hand : “How can you be such an educated environmentalist and so blind to the way women are treated right now?”.

We all want a better future, but we have different callings and personal sensitivities. It’s just hard to keep that in perspective sometimes. There is a fine line between healthy debate, critical thinking (trust me I’m French), bettering each other and expecting too much. We set such high standards for others and/or ourselves that it can be counterproductive.

“Done is better than perfect.” And “perfect” kills ideas and divides us more than it helps us thrive.

We won’t be perfect. For starters we’re all flying to Denmark to help reduce CO2 emission, among other goals. So there: none of us is worthy of that perfection crown anyway. But we are all trying to make things better. Let’s remember this when we argue in 10 days. Let’s remember this before criticizing someone else’s work: is it truly benefitting the project or is it personal sensitivity speaking? We don’t have time for fruitless criticism and frustration, we need this time to work together on sustainable development goals, goals that we all share.

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