Category: Collaboration

Want to Move from Me to We?

Photo by: Julie

Taking a break today and doing a little browsing for cool sites I didn’t know about. Here’s one: Moving From Me to We. Their tagline is “Succeed and savor life with others.” I found plenty that resonates with posts I’ve written here before. From their “About” page:

“For most of our lives we’ve been advised to lead and manage others. We’ve been taught to resolve conflict, influence, negotiate and otherwise attempt to get what we want from people.Through self-improvement, we’ve told we’ll become happier, smarter and more attractive, successful and self-aware. Right?

“But what about the concept of us? More people would rather enjoy the camaraderie of smart collaboration than be lead, persuaded or managed.”

This way of relating to each other is different from how most of us have been taught. Yet it is absolutely something that can be learned, so what are the successful methods? This site invites us to explore this question and others.

The site’s creator, Kare Anderson, was the Obama campaign team collaboration coach. Diagnosed as “phobically shy” as a child she went on to become an Emmy-winning former NBC commentator and a journalist forThe Wall Street Journal in Europe and the U.S.

“Credo for Moving From Me to We

“We don’t have to go it alone anymore. Together we can:

“Practice ways to accomplish more with each other.
Learn from unlikely allies on shared projects.
Be a part of something larger than ourselves.
Grow our work, friendship circle and lives.
Use our best talents more often.
Create a ‘first ever.’
Enlarge our worlds.
Get more done.

Pretty great words to live by, eh? Reminds me of that adage, “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”

Living Climate Change

This new website is certainly one to watch. The introductory video explains what they are up to using wonderful graphics and an upbeat, empowering message. The design firm IDEO is behind this — a true testament to the power of clear, well-illustrated information.

Our Invitation To You from IDEO on Vimeo .

And, this video is a must-see! Think Tony Robbins crossed with your accountant. We need more people like Drew Jones, fanning out across the globe to deliver this message. Be sure to watch to the end. That newspaper cover in the year 2069 is priceless – never underestimate the power of the imagination.


Now, you’re probably jazzed about climate action and wondering what you can do to truly get on this train. Good news! I have an answer for you. Come to the upcoming FR*EE call, “How to Overcome Green Overload in Your Small Business: 5 Steps for Cutting Through the Clutter.” On this call, I will show you how to take your business from zero to green with clarity and confidence. Find out more and register here.

Art for the World’s Sake

3 5 0 S K Y from Daniel Dancer on Vimeo .

Produced this month in the Netherlands, this video beautifully illustrates the pivotal role of artists in global eco-awakening. We’ve posted before about the wonderful organization, . Their worldwide campaign for people to form 350s and photograph them inspired aerial artist Daniel Dancer to produce this very moving, ambitious video. On Dancer’s website is this tagline: "Art Changes People – People Change the World."

In 350’s blog entry , they note, "Daniel just completed his most recent aerial art project with 5,000 school kids in Uden, the Netherlands – the biggest showing we’ve had anywhere in the world for 350.  Inspired by the age-old windmills that have been Holland’s trademark, the students created an artistic masterpiece with their bodies showing both the simplicity and the beauty of clean, renewable energy.  And it is beautiful, because it combines so many things that make the 350 movement – bringing people together, showing direction for a better future, involving future generations of citizens, and, of course, the number 350."

They also quote the artists involved: "From Daniel, ‘Seeing so many children laying down looking up at the sky, being paintdrops, in a style reminiscent of Vincent Van Gogh, who lived not far from here, I am certain that each will remember this project the rest of their lives and am hopeful that they all become activists for a healthy atmosphere.’  And Dorry, the project coordinator – ‘This project combined love for the arts and love for the environment into one big, breathtaking experience!!!’"

We will have more to report about what artists are up to, as they help us all become more aware of environmental challenges and solutions.

09-09-09: Worldwide Interconnectedness Happening

photo by: julie

Wildness reminds us what it what it means to be human, what we are connected to rather than what we are separate from.  Terry Tempest Williams

World Day of Interconnectedness is September 9.

I’m going to get personal here. Many of you who know my work and teaching will probably not be surprised by this: I am obsessed with connection. My business, fundamentally, is all about discovering, cultivating, and restoring connections at many levels: to the living world, to other people, to communities, to meaning, to the arts, to craft, to great ideas, to myself.

Reflecting on this recently, I saw that one of my ah-ha moments about sustainable design came in 1989, at a lecture by the great Australian architect Glenn Murcutt . His work demonstrates the profound beauty and sense of connection that is possible when you ask the right questions. It is rooted in a deep reverence for and experience of the natural world. People who live in his houses routinely talk about the unique, profound connection they feel to the outdoors, quite unlike other buildings in our modern world.

Aren’t we all, consciously or unconsciously, longing for that deep, peaceful sense of connection? I know I am. It has driven me for the last 20 years, often to unexpected places. That sustainable design and green business is my lens and medium is no mere coincidence. It fits me because it marries meaning with cultural expression, vision with practical action, spirit and matter. It is grounded in the laws of the physical world, its harsh realities AND its sublime truths. A life spent trying to understand and model how nature does it is the most exciting thing I can imagine.

That’s why when announcements like this one come to my inbox, I jump at the chance to spread the word. A World Day of Interconnectedness? Why not!? From the website : "A deep sense of interconnectedness, or oneness, is at the core of decisions and actions that are life affirming and good for the whole. In other words, it will bring forth an environmentally sustainable, fulfilling and socially just human presence."

This is a global 24-hour event with a focus on celebrating interconnectedness. The intent is to manifest and attract more of what we want on a global scale: a greater sense of interconnectedness as a foundation for a world that works for all life.

It’s simple: On 090909 in every country at 9 AM in every time zone (starting in New Zealand), all people who are aware of interconnectedness and who are committed to translate that awareness into action are invited to practice interconnectedness as much as possible throughout that day. There are a bunch of wonderful suggestions of practices you can do in the areas of ecological sustainability, social justice, and spiritual fulfillment. Many of us strive to practice our awareness every day, and usually fall short (speaking for myself). This is a chance to be fully conscious and to tap into the world-wide juice of so many with the same intention.

Please post a comment here about your experience with this. It would be wonderful to hear how it went.

Who Else Wants More Creativity and Less Competition?

photo of 2007 Solar Decathlon, 2nd-place winning LEAFHouse team: Al Santos

“If you want to go fast, go alone.
If you want to go far, go together.”
African proverb

I have been listening to Riane Eisler’s brilliant book, The Real Wealth of Nations.  It is a miraculous synthesis of her life’s work in the study of cultural values, gender relationships, and economics.

One framework that resonates particularly strongly is her characterization of cultures on a spectrum between two opposite modes: domination at one end and partnership at the other. This framework allows her analysis of current economic theory, policy and practice to be independent of political or social ideology. Any culture can be one of domination or of partnership, and never are they purely one or the other.

As she characterizes them, domination requires insensitivity, competitiveness, cruelty, and destructiveness. It inhibits the partnership qualities of consciousness, caring, and creativity. Human beings have the biological capacity for the full spectrum of all these traits. Whatever model our culture orients to will bring out, express, or inhibit these tendencies.

Domination systems are rigid, top-down rankings that are maintained through physical, economic, and psychological control. A superior / inferior worldview ranks men over women and humans over other species, leading to other rankings of in-group over out-group, which applies to anything including race, ethnicity, or religion.

By contrast, partnership systems value and support participation, empathy, equity and caring. Continued

Simplicity Matters-Earth Institute

photo by: Doug Retzler

Simplicity Matters is a forum that organizes meetings all over the MD, DC area that encourages individuals to make informed choices on leading a more sustainable future. Started in January 2002 some of their discussion titles have been Global Warming: Change CO2 Use , Choices for Sustainable Living, Exploring Deep Ecology , or topics of your own groups choosing. Find or create a group near you by visiting their webpage.

Baltimore Bioneers

photo by: Doug Retzler

Baltimore Bioneers is the regional branch of the overarching Bioneers community, a “forum for connecting the environment, health, social justice, and spirit within a broad progressive framework.” Combining both the social justice and environmental movements, Baltimore Bioneers works to foster new opportunities for creating solutions for restoring the earth and healing communities. Along with other satellite locations throughout North America, Baltimore Bioneers hosts an annual conference that features local speakers, panels, and workshops, while also broadcasting the plenary talks of the Bioneers Conference in San Rafael, CA. Their website features history of the organization, information on the conference, and ways to get involved.