“…love is a skill, not a feeling, and will require trust, vulnerability, generosity…” writes Alain de Botton, which means loving the planet is also a skill not a feeling, requiring the same trust, vulnerability and generosity.
As love sits at the heart of empathy, which triggers the cycle of invention and innovation, then I believe that there is hope for solutions which are unashamedly people and planet-centred.
In cultivating the conditions for radical and immediate change, there is a profound step in understanding to be taken by each of us.
If you agree that you are made of energy, more space than matter actually, then you understand that Nature is living its purpose through you, making you inextricably and beautifully interdependent with this ‘self-organising Universe' as Joanna Macy calls it.
Its rhythms are your rhythms.
You are a million moving parts, surrounded by an incalculable number of other moving parts. The very essence of its energy is refracted through the unique blend of you, unprecedented you.
I think that is the stuff of wonder.
I also think that means you can stop worrying about your life purpose being something outside of you that you must seek; instead it is simply opening up from the inside to your imagination, problem-solving creativity and ideas.
Your skills are the prism through which Nature’s exquisite problem-solving can take place across the whole system which you are part of.
I think it’s hard to do systems thinking though, when you are dreaming up your ideas for taking action, if you still don’t understand that you are part of the ecological system. And we have viewed ourselves as separate, so we haven’t done it.
It seems to me that we are the only species on the planet, despite our intellect, which at some point stopped joining up the dots about what happens to what we create, where is goes, how it reintegrates itself. If you see yourself as outside of the natural system, you don’t create things with a view to completing the circle to trigger it to self-organise.
Time to start! With great urgency! I don’t believe innovation is innovation these days unless it’s being designed with protection of people and planet in mind.
To come back to love then, because it opens up your greatest capacity to dream, create, innovate. I’ve called it on other occasions the Tao of Innovation, but I’ve think it is more accurate to call it the Tao of Impact instead, this 'how things happen.'
When I do this with you, exploring this ‘how’ means starting from the positive impact you want to create and reverse engineering from there. We are immediately in a space of reciprocity with the planet, bound by trust, vulnerability, generosity, for best solutions; meaning that you will go a long way to aligning your ideas to be regenerative.
And what of hope?
Well, I believe, if love is a skill and therefore love for the planet is too, then there is cause for great hope; because skills can be remembered, learned, re-learned and expand as prisms for planetary problem-solving.
With a bit of Springsteen in mind, “All you gotta do is say yes…"
 Bruce Springsteen, Tougher Than The Rest
#flowinaction #purejoyofcreating #imagination #ideas #creativity #innovation #entrepreneurship #wonder #love #sustainability #sdgs #designforflourishing #designthinking #peopleandplanetcentreddesign #climateaction #wellbeing #weareallconnected
Full of gratitude for this testimonial from the GEW2019 workshop in partnership with Dr Vlad Glaveneau that we ran at Webster University Geneva - Center for Creativity & Innovation. Webster Center for Creativity & Innovation
"Dear Elaine, Thanks a lot for your workshop. It was as informative as fun.
Your original and creative approach enabled us to look for new solutions and fostered a "think out of the box" mindset.
I also appreciated the mix between using our child side with colors, pens and imagination combined with the technology side and mapping.
I can only highly recommend your workshop for any team or organisation who wish to create new product or service.
Or just want a one-of-a-kind team building.
Finally, merci for your kindness and openness.
You managed to motivate everyone and gently pushed us out of our limits."
#flowinaction #purejoyofcreating #imagination #ideas #creativity #innovation #entrepreneurship #designthinking #designforflourishing #peopleandplanetcentreddesign #sustainability #sdgs #wellbeing #weareallconnected #climateaction
As a brand Ambassador for Hazu.io I use the platform to deliver my innovation for impact activities, resilience workshops and coaching both face to face and online. Not only can I see my whole business in one place, but also deliver events, workshops and e-learning all around the world.
Even more exciting, is seeing impact being made in real-time, as you interact with the platform and upload your responses as you go, developing them over time.
Being able to capture and visualise impact, and see it evolve, is really powerful to inspire and motivate. It demonstrates that there is so much good happening, at a granular and a global level, to take action for the planet.
I am also a license reseller for Hazu.io and an implementation consultant, bringing my expertise in designing strategic business solutions to you, helping you to use the platform to increase learning, engagement, collaboration and impact, as you run activities through it.
Get in touch to find out how Hazu.io can transform your business and increase impact.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org for an informal conversation.
I'm delighted to have been invited to become an Associate Board Member of Webster University Geneva's - Center for Creativity & Innovation , a multi-disciplinary centre dedicated to the study and exploration of creativity and innovation and their applications across sectors and disciplines to promote a better world.
From January 2020 - dates tbc - I am delighted to be a trainer for Impaakt's Impact Analyst Certification and running free workshops, empowering you with the skills to understand impact, write impact notes on the Impaakt platform and ensure that businesses are doing business for good.
I'll be running workshops face-to-face and online. More details to come very soon.
Read more about Impaakt
My talk starts at 33.21 where I'm talking about 'A different starting point for creating solutions for a flourishing planet...'
...I 'erm' a lot...something I'm working on :)...
On 6th December, I'm thrilled to be speaking at the International Symposium on the Real-World Impact of Creativity at Webster University Geneva's Center for Creativity & Innovation.
It's open to all and free to come along. Click to register here.
And here's the event outline if you click on the link.
I'll be talking about 'A Different Starting Point to Create Solutions for a Flourishing Planet'
"We need radical solutions to truly tackle challenges in communities and at a global scale, which means we need a new generation of intra- and entrepreneurs with the courage, vision and skills to imagine and design around flourishing, for flourishing of people and planet. We need to cultivate the conditions for people to show-up in their organisations in this way, to create their best solutions and challenge the status quo. That means connecting them to their unique creativity and giving them the space to explore and discover. Bringing together wellbeing tools and innovation challenges, provides a new lens to look through and ‘change-maker spaces’ to play with ideas, break entrenched rules, take risks and change perspective to generate innovative solutions; as well as building complex problem-solving, design and systems thinking skills."
#flowinaction #purejoyofcreating #imagination #ideas #creativity #innovation #entrepreneurship #designforflourishing #flourishing #peopleandplanetcentreddesign #designthinking #impact #socialimpact
A huge thank you to everyone who came along to our workshop in partnership with Webster University's Center for Creativity & Innovation in Geneva.
We used the tools of wonder, love for the planet and reverse-engineering to open up our creativity; set in a framework using design and systems thinking to be more and more innovative in our ideas and approach to taking action for the planet.
I was running the workshop out of the Hazu.io platform so that we could capture in real-time the concepts and insights from people. Meanwhile, Andy Abgottspon the Founder and CEO of Hazu.io turned the workshop into a Virtual Reality demo, enabling us to experience what it will be like to explore our concepts and impacts on the SDGs.
This is where I'll be taking the Flow In Action workshops in the future, from imagination to ideas to innovation to impact - as an Ambassador and early-adopter of Hazu as a platform to deliver elearning, workshops and innovation challenges.
If you're excited to learn about how I help you to increase your impact for the planet...get in touch!
#flowinaction #purejoyofcreating #imagination #ideas #creativity #innovation #entrepreneurship #impact #designthinking #peopleandplanetcentreddesign #designforflourishing #flourishing #sdgs #wonder #love #gew2019 #wellbeing
It's Global Entrepreneurship Week 2019!
Join us on Thursday at Webster University Geneva where we'll be using wonder, love and reverse engineering in an innovation challenge, to deepen your creativity and unlock greater innovation in your solutions!
Inspiring students to take climate action means equipping them with the right tools.
I ran an innovation challenge with students from Lemania-Verbier International School (LVIS) on 1st November 2019, exploring how to make Verbier a sustainable ski resort by 2030.
Flow In Action innovation challenges use design thinking to build student wellbeing, problem-solving skills and plant the seeds for real projects to happen.
First, we imagined and downloaded ideas. Second, we reverse engineered to the present day to understand how we get there. Using futures-thinking as our starting point, we dreamed bigger to bring in new perspectives and insights; exploring what we need to do to make it happen, opens up the incredible space of understanding impact. Finally, we uploaded ideas onto the Flow In Action Hazu edtech platform, so that they were captured as part of a global library.
Why do it this way? This style of challenge-based learning, makes a space for every student to show up with their unique creativity and become a problem-solver, enabling them to explore essential questions about impact on people and planet, so that they can adapt solutions to respect and protect.
Plus, it’s practicing and embedding the design and systems thinking skills recognised as essential future-of-work skills for Industry 4.0, if not the most vital. This learn to move mountains® approach becomes people and planet-centred design-thinking, empowering students as the innovator and entrepreneurs of the new decade.
Watch this space then. From a hyperloop inspired vertical transport system to, and around, the resort; to fully solar-powered housing; to telecabines which carbon-capture. Take a look here.
To turn these ideas into reality, students had fantastic insights on repurposing existing solar panels, incentivising different behaviour of residents and tourists; thinking about ways to manage the value chain, so as not to cause more damage and move away from a consume/dispose culture.
[Coursera Global Skills Index: https://www.coursera.org/gsi]
#flowinaction #purejoyofcreating #imagination #ideas #creativity #innovation #entrepreneurship #wonder #lovefortheplanet #sustainability #sdgs #climateaction #designthinking #humancentreddesign #peopleandplanetcentreddesign #designforflourishing #flourishing #playwithideas
Delighted and excited to be a speaker on 6th Dec at the Webster Center for Creativity & Innovation International Symposium: The Real World Impact of Creativity
Thank you to Dr Vlad Glaveneau for inviting me.
Find out more and sign up:
In the UK, the Durham Commission on Creativity & Education was published in mid-October, citing:
"The increasing recognition of the economic and social value of creativity and creative thinking has brought a fresh urgency to the development of entrepreneurship and the skills of the future workforce."
This is extraordinarily well-timed as Global Entrepreneurship Week 2019 takes place 18th – 24th November.
Why celebrate GEW in your school? Because it is a fantastic way to build youth wellbeing, complex problem-solving skills and solutions to challenges in your community.
How does it help? Children and youth can celebrate by using their unique creativity* to play with ideas for solutions on taking action for people and planet.
What can they do? Use a Flow In Action Innovation Challenge Toolkit as an easy-to-use, one-stop solution that you can use immediately.
Flow In Action Innovation Challenges are interactive challenge-based activities, using people and planet-centred design thinking* as an approach to:
1. Sustainable School Innovation Challenge Toolkit: You can get this straight away, complete with online access to the full toolkit on the Flow In Action Hazu platform and the space to upload 30 ideas to create a visual impact library. You can use the innovation challenge as a rapid download activity or follow the lessons in full. Either way, you're planting seeds.
2. Tailored Innovation Challenges + Toolkit: We'll talk and I will design with you an innovation challenge specific to your community's needs, to use with the online challenge Toolkit.
3. Youth Entrepreneurship Workshops: Get in touch to talk about me running one or more face-to-face entrepreneurship workshops on-site at your school.
* The Coursera Global Skills Index 2019 identifies design thinking at the number 1 skill required across 7/10 industries.
As part of our preparations, wherever you are in the world, use this wonder activity with your young people to connect them more deeply to their creativity as the new generation of innovators and entrepreneurs taking action for people and planet.
I'd love to hear from you to talk about how we can work together to empower children and youth. Email email@example.com to arrange a time to explore further.
When was the last time you remember feeling wonder?
Can you remember?
Can you picture what you were looking at or thinking about?
I’m asking, because wonder is a powerhouse, creating a chain reaction to real and radical impact in what you do.
Here’s the basic equation of what I do in my work with you:
Reconnect you to your unique blend of creativity,
Using seemingly innocuous wellbeing tools, (like wonder)
To open-wide the doors to your capacity to innovate,
So that you can show up to make change happen in your spaces.
What I’m doing with you, to you, for you is people and planet-centred design thinking …for people and planet-centred innovation and entrepreneurship. Cool, eh?
It starts in that space before ideas and ends up where you’re risktakers, changemakers, rulebreakers.
You’re unprecedented, so truly, it is important that you’re using these wellbeing tools to flourish, so that you can imagine, design and create solutions for the flourishing of others and the planet.
Anyway, back to wonder. As a powerhouse.
I prescribed wonder back in March 2019 and I’m excited to be running a workshop with Wonder expert, Dr Vlad Glaveneau, Director of Webster Center for Creativity & Innovation on 21st November 2019 as part of Global Entrepreneurship Week 2019 in Geneva.
Save The Date, details here in the link and join us at 16.00 – 18.00 + apero.
We’ll be using wonder, love and a rapid download innovation challenge, with some insights from Scott Poynton to shake things up, to give you tools and bring new perspectives on innovating.
#flowinaction #wonder #love #gew2019
SAVE THE DATE!!!
Join me & Dr Vlad Glaveneau on 21st November at Webster University in Geneva, as part of Global Entrepreneurship Week 2019!
We're going to using a couple of wellbeing tools to connect you to your problem-solving creativity and inspire you to greater heights of innovation as entrepreneurs!
#GEW2019 #entrepreneurship #purposedriven #innovation #wellbeing #wonder #love #designforflourishing #flowinaction #purejoyofcreating #creativity #ideas #sdgs #sustainability #designthinking #designforflourishing #peopleplanetcentreddesign
Read my latest article in Sovereign Magazine Issue 22 - scroll to pages 52/53 to understand how #love is a necessary starting point for opening up your creativity as an innovator and entrepreneur.
On October 9th I'm really excited to be running my Resilience for Going Fast & Far on Your Entrepreneurship Journey workshop at EPFL Innovation Park for start-up and scale-up entrepreneurs.
Find out more and sign up today for this free workshop.
Click on the link https://epfl-innovationpark.ch/events/event/epfl-innovation-park-workshop-resilience-for-innovators-entrepreneurs/
I've heard from so many of you that you're looking for different practical ways to get your children and youth involved in taking climate action because not everyone is in a position to strike or go to a march.
I made you a toolkit with a Sustainable School innovation challenge. Ready-to-go. Easy-to-use. You can use it with young people ages 6 - 18 years.
Read more here: www.flowinaction.org/toolkit
Imagine the scene this Friday 20th September when you inspire your children and youth to 'march' by dreaming big to create a Sustainable School and then turning that into local action.
Use the toolkit to run a single short session or run over a few weeks in class.
Get your toolkit at www.flowinaction.org/toolkit
I'm excited to share the toolkit with you because I've been working with children and youth on taking action for the last 8 years, building the innovation and entrepreneurship skills with them that we use when we are creating real-world solutions in businesses and organisations. I know that young people thrive when they play with ideas, building their wellbeing and Industry 4.0 skills.
This is feedback from James, age 10 years, after he came to one of my learn to move mountains® workshops last year, using the approach you will in the toolkit.
#flowinaction #purejoyofcreating #imagination #ideas #creativity #innovation #entrepreneurship #climateaction #startwithideas #youthvoices #sustainableschool #startlocal #sdgs
Beyond the striking and marching, we need young people to have innovative ideas. Starting today!
I know from working in social change and sustainable development, that taking real climate action needs imagination, innovation and entrepreneurial spirit.
Solutions don’t just happen. First, you see a problem around you. Second, you come up with ideas. Then, you take the risk on turning these into reality.
You need to know how to have these ideas and practice having them again and again, showing up with your unique creativity and embedding the process until it become intuitive.
We need children and young people to know how to do this dreaming big, to know that it is valid and necessary.
Beyond the striking and marching, we need to give them a starting point for taking action, which ties into what really happens when we are building real-world sustainability solutions.
What are you planning to do with your young people on Friday 20th September, when a global strike has been called?
How will you acknowledge the UN Climate Summit happening in New York on 23rd September?
I know as educators that having a ready-to-go toolkit is what you need to use in class, across subjects, in extra-curricular activities and in Assemblies.
I’ve created one for you, complete with Lesson Plans and Worksheets, enabling you to engage students in an innovation challenge around UN Sustainable Development Goal 11 – Sustainable Cities & Communities by inviting them to create a Sustainable School.
You can scale-up or down as you need; run it across a term or in a single session; run it for a small group or across the whole school.
I've been running these innovation and entrepreneurship activities with children and youth in educational settings for a long time now, so this is not an add-on, it's an entry point back to your specific subject.
Read more about the toolkit, get yours and inspire your young people as the innovators and entrepreneurs taking action for the planet.
Do you need a practical, ready-to-go, easy-to-use toolkit to get your young people engaged in climate action? Build wellbeing, future of work skills and take action at a local level with this innovation ideas challenge.
Find out more and buy it today!
#flowinaction #toolkit #purejoyofcreating #youthvoices #climateaction #wellbeing #ideas #creativity #innovation #entrepreneurship #sdgs #sustainability #kidstakeaction
One of the tools in my #wildwoman #rebelgirl toolkit is being a trained florist. It was a real joy to work together with @aventerre_volleges @alpine_dreamer to pick, design and create celebration flowers for a birthday - 'just picked' mountain style - with herbs, grasses and flowers.
So hand picked they were from @aventerre_volleges specialist bio organic garden.
It was a beautiful experience having different types of bees coming to drink the nectar whilst making these arrangements up.
For me this is living 'love for the planet' as a life value. UN Sustainable Development Goals in action at a local level as we sourced locally and organically, celebrating the mountains, working with what was in season.
#flowinaction #purejoyofcreating#aventerre #creativity #sustainability#sdgs #climateaction#weareallconnected #awe #mountains
As students head back to school, are you ready for the ‘Greta Effect?’
Children and youth all around the world have been striking and marching, wanting their voices to be heard on the urgent need to take climate action.
Even before Greta’s impact, young people who were questioned as part of the MASDAR Youth Survey 2016 identified ‘climate change as the biggest threat to the world in the next decade.’
The young people that I know and work with in my learn to move mountains® innovation and entrepreneurship activities, are really incredible with the speed at which they dream big.
I know that you need practical ways to take action, which integrate sustainability into curricula, increase wellbeing and build ‘future of work’ skills; and learn to move mountains® is built around those elements.
I’ve taken my proven approach of engaging young people through Innovation Challenges around the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and created an online workshop - Create Your Innovation Challenge - to train you as educators, librarians and youth advocates in NGOs.
In this 3-hour online training, I give you a complete toolkit for creating an SDG Innovation Challenge to engage children and youth in your community, from 8 – 18 years, regardless of academic ability.
When you create an SDG Innovation Challenge, you make a space for every child to show-up with their unique imagination and creativity, build core skills, connect them to a sense of purpose and have a starting point to turn ideas into real action in your community.
The next training takes place online on Thursday 19th September 18.00h – 21.00h CEST. Find out more about it here and book your place.
If you want to hear more about why SDG Innovation Challenges matter before you sign up, how the training will work for you and what you’ll be putting in place, then I’ll be running a FREE 30-min webinar on Tuesday 27th August 14.00h -14.30h CEST. Click here to register for the FREE webinar.
I am really excited to be sharing this training with you. I have worked in social change for 25 years and integrated my expertise on problem-solving for sustainability and sustainable development into education settings since 2011 with curricula, workshops and service-learning strategies. I also continue to work with leaders and entrepreneurs to imagine sustainability solutions, design them around flourishing of people and planet and build the resilience for the journey of turning ideas into real projects.
learn to move mountains® innovation and entrepreneurship activities are designed to engage young people, as the new generation of problem-solvers for the planet. As well as the online training, I come to your sites to deliver learn to move mountains® workshops and challenges directly with your young people.
I also run Youth Entrepreneurship Workshops in partnership with the United Nations Conference on Trade & Development (UNCTAD) – Division of Investment & Enterprise (DIAE) team at the Palais des Nations in Geneva.
You can ask me about how both of these options will work for you in your settings. Just drop me an email for an informal discussion.
#flowinaction #imagination #ideas #creativity #wellbeing #resilience #innovation #entrepreneurship #youthvoices #youthentrepreneurship #sdgs #climateaction #sustainability #sustainabledevelopment #learntomovemountains
I’ve been littering my articles with talk about love for some time now.
I see that some of you are also beginning to say the L-word too, which is excellent. Perhaps we can join forces and work together?
I’ve even gone global about the L-word in my September ‘learn to move mountains’ column of Sovereign Magazine – it really feels like a go-big or go-home moment – given the magazine is distributed to outlets in hardcopy and digital all around the world.
Why? Why do I keep talking about love? Why do I keep talking about it in relation to sustainability and sustainable development?
Because it is the starting point of true innovation and action.
My way of calling it is the Tao of Innovation. The ‘how’ of things, ‘how’ things happen, unfurl, unfold.
Love, with all of its spectrum, “is the white light of emotion” and each of us is a prism. It is the micro-moments of connection with yourself and with others.
It is the ground zero of your imagination and creativity.
When you look through this lens, you gather your courage to explore and create your best solution. You can’t look away from the impact further down the line on people or planet. You are forced to keep coming back to designing solutions around flourishing.
In Love Letter to the Earth, Thich Naht Hanh writes:
“We are a living, breathing manifestation of this beautiful and generous planet. Knowing this, we can begin to transform our relationship to the Earth…We will fall completely in love with the Earth.”
In my September Sovereign column, I give you a task to do, set by young people that I’ve talked to. I don’t want to duplicate that so you need to read the article. I’m giving you another one to do, again set by the same young people.
Dust off your organisation’s values. Whether you’re a solopreneur or a micro-business or a global brand. Is ‘love’ one of them? I’m guessing no.
What if it was? What if you and your organisation had to live ‘love for the planet’ as a value?
What has to change? Might you have to relinquish a growth business model for a model of flourishing? How would your business processes change? How would people show-up and do their job? How would you show-up and do yours?
Imagine it. Imagine how things would be different. Imagine how incredible real, disruptive innovation might be. It is so much more exciting than lazy duplication that promotes a status quo for a few.
You are the thought-leaders, impact investors, platform builders. Maybe it’s time to break your own rules? After all, every journey starts with maybe.
You will need help. We go far together, so I have rather excellent workshops and coaching we can roll out to get everyone looking through this lens, connecting values and businesses processes, bringing new perspectives to increase innovation and impact.
I’ve often been urged to deliver messages more softly, to ‘pick pockets’ rather than punch. Meh!
I’m working on it but the opposite of love is fear, avoidance, scarcity; and we’re seeing tidal waves of that everywhere. I don’t much like tidal waves at the best of times, so I feel there is a need to be direct. You need to start breaking rules!
Do the exercise. With some urgency. Then take action. You don’t need to go alone. I’m here to walk the path with you, with a whole toolkit to help.
I wish you love and a kiss on the brow for courage. This is the how of things, the Tao of Innovation, how things happen, how things start.
 Diane Ackerman, A Natural History of Love
 Barbara L Fredrickson
#flowinaction #wellbeing #imagination #ideas #creativity #innovation #entrepreneurship #purposedriven #values #resilience #socialinnovation #sustainability #sdgs #climateaction #noplanetb
"Design thinking becomes a thing of spectacular beauty when used not just to create a solution but, to create a solution which places designing for human needs in the context of designing for the wellbeing and flourishing of people AND planet."
Read on in the August edition of Sovereign Magazine at this link...
#flowinaction #wellbeing #love #imagination #ideas #creativity #innovation #entrepreneurship #climateaction #noplanetb #sustainability #sdgs #takeaction #climateemergency