Collective inspiration


Day 4 at the DNX/Betahaus/Copass camp, has only convinced me more than ever about the power of inspiration versus motivation.

Motivation is where you listen to a ‘guru’, usually, they are self-proclaimed, and they invest heavily in a manipulation machine to convince you that they are the number 1.

Sure, when they are bouncing around a stage, supported by loud music, shouting and gimmicks, promising life changing insights, you can get lifted by the collective hype and atmosphere. You walk out of the show pumped.

The problem with this shallow process is the only winners are the ‘gurus’ and you wake up the next day having to deal with your life and it’s challenges without your ‘guru’.

Having been to many of these types of camps, the thing I find each time is I walk away with inspiration, which is much deeper and longer lasting than motivation. It is something that touches our soul and heart. Passion and inspiration come from the heart, not from the shouting and guarantees of the motivator.

However, another thing comes into play with gathering people with shared values together in a camp for 10 days, not only is it fun mixed with work, it is something much more powerful, a collective of like minded people. The most important thing happens is you get collective inspiration from listening and sharing with others.

Today’s inspiration came from talking with Claudi of GreenMeBerlin, her ideas of bringing fun into the often dull, serious and evangelical pioneering of green issues, is a classic ‘purple cow’ as my mate Seth puts it.

We’ve had green campaigners for many, many years, and some have had success and others very little impact. That’s often because they have failed to make their story or mission appealing. Now that does not mean everything has to be turned into the lowest common denominator to give it mass appeal.

I discussed this recently with my friend Stefano and his point was that in order to get people to change you need to make it appealing and not preachy. Appealing means putting inspiration into it, something that ignites our emotions that drive our decision making.

Sure you can try and motivate people short-term by guilt, but longer-term that never works.

What I’ve taken away from this so far, is that these gatherings and the people who attend are proof that there are others in the world who share my values and passion for real change. It is signal that people want an alternative.

It is up to all of us who want that to continue to collectively inspire each other beyond the camps.

Together we can build the alternative we want.

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