25 May 2015

sustainable communication

Sustainable communication is a relatively new way of framing how we communicate with each other. I sat in a seminar about food waste a few weeks ago. The seminar was for social entrepreneurship in the startup phase, and it was great. Exciting and excited (funny how those two go together...) outgoing group of people from all over the world, many of whom had travelled to Oslo just for this event.

One of the dominant topics of the day was food waste and what to do about it. One of the morning sessions was led by Simon Eisner,  the director of Allwin Sweden, a logistics company that redistributes planned food waste to people in need. Planned food waste is the 20% surplus that most food producers keep around in case the suddenly have a spike in order. It is planned, and it is hidden truth of the food industry that it almost always gets destroyed. AND they pay to have it destroyed. Eisner at Allwin has put together a logistics company that redistributes the food. They now provide 3 meals a day for 50,000 people in Gothenburg, Sweden. Not bad at all.

What about applying the same principles of sustainable food production to communication? If you google sustainable communication, you will find that it is a large industry, but is mostly concerned with environment-friendly printing and recycling. There is a communications consultant in the US that writes about sustainable communication, but I only found one.  Doesn't it sound simple? Fostering communications with those around you that create energy and don't kill creativity. The human environment is now in an upward spiral of hospitable conditions for life, productivity, creativity, mercy, kindness, love. Who doesn't want that?

I will even go one further!

Let's re-frame a little bit here and set up this template:  as within so without. The conditions that you have on the inside of you will reproduce themselves on the outside of you. Your outlook, your dreams, your ability to re-frame, your ability to consistently seek creative solutions will undoubtedly have an effect on how the life around is shaped. I apologize to go into that fuzzy domain despised by researchers using deductive method, common sense, but bear with me.  Our outer world is a reflection of our inner world. So, by maintain a vibrant and hospitable communication environment we eventually will see the outer, solid world mirror that verdant lovely inner world.  Will the outside world ever be healthy if we don't manage the inside world first? I personally doubt it, and I know that communication with other people is where it all starts. Sustainability in communication. It's time!

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