I picked a terrible time to run a campaign to 'bring the world home' and share my 'story of sustainability from south of the border.'
I’ve been back from Peace Corps Mexico for 7 months, and I felt finally ready to come out of my shell and get re-engaged in my ‘new DC life.’
So I launched my Kickstarter Campaign on Oct 5th – it felt urgent – and I gave myself a month to raise $15,000 in an all-or-nothing all-out effort.
But no one (perhaps only the special select few) in Washington wants to hear it right now.
They ask: How can we help others if we cannot even help ourselves?!
Exactly. This is one of the messages of my book – and the workshops I’m developing to train leaders to cultivate resilient organizations and teams to create sustainable projects.
It was a hard lesson for me to learn. It took a year, in Peace Corps Mexico, of challenges and mistakes, heat exhaustion and homesickness, cross-cultural confusion and miscommunication, parasites, corrupt politicians and naysayers, before I realized:
Sustainability begins with me.
That’s when this model emerged in my mind – the Pyramid Model of Sustainability. It became the basis for my work in the communities, and it’s the organizing principle for my book.
Once I got it, then I able to move to the Level 2 of the Pyramid of Sustainability - working por, para y con la gente - by for and with the people of my community to create change.
So what about you? What can you do right down, during this shutdown, to make a difference in your own life and in your community? It’s a time of fear – where notions of the way things should have broken down.
How do you turn a breakdown into a breakthrough?
Maybe it's time to take-up yoga, commit to that exercise routine you’ve always set aside because of work demands, discover some new strength within yourself to cope, even fight?
Perhaps it’s time to gather your co-workers and plant yourselves on the steps of the Capitol. Yelling (not at your TV) may be cathartic. How about those War Vets who’ve been protesting the all week at the WWII memorial, protesting the VA's shudown and lack of services?
Or take a day to volunteer at Martha’s Table, like my friend Chantelle, a furloughed worker from HHS, who was then graced by a surprise visit by the President. Here they are making sandwiches together?
Small actions can lead to sweet surprises.
Take one TODAY.
Because sustainability really does begin with YOU.