How it Happened
Sustainably Motivated grew out of an appreciation for nature and our concern for the environment. The more we learnt about what was happening to our planet, and the rate and scale of resource consumption, the more we felt compelled to share.
Knowledge is certainly an incredibly powerful tool, but it can also feel like a burden to those who are aware of the issues. This became the case for my wife and I. We began by simply reading about the topic, and ended up watching countless documentaries, going to events, and joining multiple environmental organizations. Still, it wasn’t enough.
Sharing the Learning Journey
The more my wife and I discovered, the more astonished we were that a greater number of people didn’t know about the critical issues. Even very dear friends and family members seemed disconnected with what we were learning about. Clearly climate change was a threat to all life on earth, and a direct consequence of modern industrial practices.
Pretty scary stuff, but our friends and colleagues didn’t seem to notice. This was evidently a failure of our media channels, education systems, and the prevailing political structure that caters to those with financial influence.
Too often, the paramount interest is related to economics factors, which in turn contributes to the current social-consumer narrative. We get fed with so much information daily, yet we’re lacking coverage on many of the issues that are so fundamentally vital to us all.
Looking to the Future
As a result of this informational imbalance, we became motivated to share our discoveries. Indeed, the site started off as a place to curate and keep track of what we had been learning. A place that we could easily access anywhere with an internet connection and provide for our friends an interesting and reliable place to learn about the sustainably related topics.
Initially I had really been all about the social media. It’s definitely a great way to stay connected to topics and events, but with the enormous flow of information, it was tough to get back to and find some of the stories and sources. I did create a Facebook Page but soon realized that my followers weren’t seeing my posts unless I paid to promote them.
So we started the blog! I’ve been writing and posting for some time now, and I try to incorporate links as often as possible so you can go see for yourself where I’m getting the info from for my opinions. I’ve definitely dedicated a lot of time here, but it’s also become a labor of love. Since our son was born, my wife and I have been even more motivated to continue sharing the message of sustainability.
What’s the Deal with the Old-Timey Bike?
The old school bicycle with the over-sized front wheel that you see in our logo and the picture above is called a penny-farthing. While being a personal fan of cycling and the bicycle as a means of commute, this old fashioned bike also presented a great analogy.
I had once heard that trying to change the mind of a group of people was comparable to steering a really large ship. It’s a somewhat common comparison in business to think of the CEO of a corporation as a ship’s captain. Consequently, there are a number of stories and anecdotes that refer to the capacity of change leaders in an organization as trying to steer the group.
Well in that context, I had read a quote (I’ll try and find it, link it shortly) about how we can shift opinions by making small changes and building upon them. Similar to moving a really large ship, we can accomplish this with a really large rudder. The large rudder can, in turn, be moved by a somewhat smaller rudder at first. Eventually, you will get the ship to move.
In that way I see the penny-farthing as a visual representation of the social mindset that need to shift with regards climate change and sustainability. We can do it, but it will take the efforts of a dynamic smaller wheel to get the bigger wheel to go where we want it to;)