Do you want to change your future?
Join the global movement to solve futures literacy
A global perspective on changing the future
It is now the last quarter of 2021 and we now what a global pandemic looks like. Could we have imagined the global impact due to COVID-19. Most of us couldn’t have imagined what the world would look like with 8 billion people being hit by a virus, let alone the global (urban) population living in lockdown. Now we have seen the effects of COVID-19 we start to identify the early warnings from scientists like Johan Rockström (who identified the planetary boundaries in 2009), influential philanthropists like Bill Gates (who did a Ted talk about global pandemics 2015) and climate research reports from institutes like IPCC (and their sixth report with all the evidence of human influence on the climate.)
After more than 10.000 years of living in the Holocene (the period after the last Ice age) we have now moved into the Anthropocene. This is the geological epoch where humans have significant influence on the planet’s climate and ecosystems. What does this mean? While global leaders are gathering in Glasgow to attend the COP26 Conference, we as individuals have a choice to make. Do we want to contribute to changing the possible future outcomes?
Urgent need for positive climate change
During the Global lockdown we’ve witnessed the positive effects of large and polluting factories shutting down and the sky becoming clear and clean. We’ve seen the regenerative power of rivers and oceans. We’ve seen how people started working together, signing and supporting medical staff, school teachers and municipal staff.
Parents became teachers and had to manage their priorities. Even the most career driven parents had to acknowledge that the work-life balance was better. Yes, we all had to make choices, look after our loved ones or, in some cases lost family, friends and colleagues to the Corona virus. My thoughts are with them as well. If however, we look beyond the challenges we can see what we as humans are capable of achieving. Once we start thinking about possible futures I have faith in the future that lies ahead.
Futures thinking skills to change your future
Can you change your future? No you can’t. What you can do though is develop the skills to imagine possible futures and derive meaningful, positive actions from them in the present. Imagine what would happen if young people had the skills and the tools to develop their competencies to become futures literate? Think about skills such as creativity, curiosity, problem solving, collaboration, critical thinking, strategic thinking, empathy, awareness and communication.
All soft-skills that help individuals to deal with change. And I know one thing for certain. Change is the only constant in life. The past six years have proven that resilience and futures literacy are key to work towards a shift in how we live, love, think and work.
Make an impact on your future with the SDGs
The question for me is no longer when do I start to change my behaviour. It is time to take responsibility for my actions to support the Sustainable Development Goals. The question is no longer if I have to change the way I live, travel work and raise my four children. For me the sustainable development goals have become a purpose in life and I’m on board!
What does sustainable development mean to you? What is important to you? How can you contribute to a sustainable future? What can you do to make a difference? Once you start to think about that your journey has started and that is good news.
Can we change the future? No, the future, just like the past, does not exist. Only the present time exists. We only have our perspectives and perceptions about past and future events. By allowing for multiple possible future scenario’s we can create expectations and work towards preferable futures. A great way to take meaningful action towards a preferable, sustainable future is to start teaching young people and inspire them to influence their possible futures.