The Ladies Who Launch series gives members of the Ladies Who Launch Incubator a platform for sharing their stories of giving back and doing good through their business'.
Who hasn't been cut off, flipped off or ticked off by a yoga-mat wielding Range Rover sporting a "global warming" or "namaste" sticker? You almost have to laugh at those who externally give credence to the politically correct agenda but show their true colors with a middle finger. You can almost hear them saying, "Get the BLEEP out of my way! I'm late for meditation!" Tevis Gale takes it a step further and points that finger at everyone. We may talk a big game about our carbon footprint or saving water, but what are we really doing about it? Do something, do anything, but please don't be an impotent activist.
Amy Swift, Editor in Chief, www.ladieswholaunch.com
Put Your Actions Where Your Heart Is
By Tevis Gale
Balance Integration Corporation
New York Incubator
212 W. 22nd Street 2B
NY NY 10011
I was riding my bike down the left lane of Manhattan's 8th Avenue this morning, navigating the swarms of yellow taxis, when the driver of a sparkling new Prius turned left in front of me directly across my bike lane. The driver's window was open, and his head only feet away from mine. Incredulous, I asked "Hey, do you realize you are about to KILL me?" He ignored me, hit the gas and made his turn, slowly enough for me to see the bumper sticker on his vehicle, "Think Globally, Act Locally" it read. Nice car, but what about "being the change"?
The driver is not alone in his reckless attitude. The Nathan Cummings Foundation today revealed that when it comes to the environment, we are all cutting life off at the pass. Their research showed that yes, we all want to stop global warming -- that is until we actually have to DO something about it.
Social responsibility must come home. Pointing fingers at corporations for the obvious benefit they CAN do to enhance society is a great beginning, but our interest in improving the world cannot stop there. Without backing up our scrutiny of institutions with greater awareness of our own actions, this hollow posturing allows us as individuals to persist in a state of denial about how our choices impact ourselves and those around us day in, day out. Truth be told, it's time for us to make personal our interest in saving the earth beyond corporate responsibility -- it's time to walk our talk.
Consider our own lives: as a nation and culture we struggle with work/life balance, kvetching about how our work robs from our quality of life. Meanwhile, what personal responsibility do we take for the quality of our social lives, that of love, friendships, family and self, much less that nameless horde often called "community"?
If social responsibility is defined as "The principle that companies should contribute to the welfare of society and not be solely devoted to maximizing profits." (source: Investopedia), we each need to prioritize our own true welfare and that of the human beings around us rather than devoting ourselves to maximizing income, minimizing traffic time, or otherwise "getting ahead."
When we act as good custodians of the lives we can most immediately impact, that of ourselves and those beings around us whether anonymous or intimately related, the world not only becomes a more kind place, but our experience reflects exactly the changes we profess to wish to see. Smile at a stranger. Give way in the supermarket line. Turn off the Blackberry and play with your kids. Cut up the credit card and cook dinner for a change. These little miniscule acts of consciousness transform not only our own experience but that of countless people around us. They say when the people lead the leaders will follow...Let's begin now.