Saturday, November 21, 2009

Making it Better

First, I wanted to share one little thing that happened on my way to work the other day. Well, I shouldn't be stopping by Dunkin Donuts; but when I went through the drive-thru lane and after ordering a coffee and blueberry muffin, I got a surprise. I pulled up to the window to pay and the cashier said, “You don't owe me anything. The person ahead of you paid for yours.” The lady in the red SUV was long gone. Now, that has never happened to me. I had a big smile on my face though, and it made me think about what a better world we would have if we had more like the lady in the red SUV.

And then when I opened the e-mail this morning from Idealist, my earlier experience took on a greater meaning.

What is proposed (the short version) is:

In one sentence: It’s time to build a global network that will serve and support all those people who want to make the world a better place, online and in person.

The key to doing this is to bypass all those specific issues that can overwhelm and divide us, and instead focus on three challenges that affect all of us:

1. There is often a big gap between our good intentions and our actions.
2. Our problems are connected, but we are not.
3. The world is full of good ideas that don't spread quickly enough.

What we need, then, is a network, a movement, an ecosystem that will:

* Make it easier for people and organizations to move from intentions to action.
* Connect people, organizations, and resources in every possible way.
* Find good ideas wherever they are, and distribute them as widely as possible.

If we can do this, and do it well, most of our local and global challenges will be easier to deal with.

So, I have signed up. I need a mission. Maybe this is it. Maybe we could stop saying, "That's a shame. It shouldn't be that way." Maybe, boldly, we could actually make it better.

Happy Saturday from the Land of Lincoln my cyber-friends.


UmmFarouq said...

Oh, how wonderful. I absolutely love the, although now-sounding cliche "pay it forward" concept, but it really can work when put into motion. I agree, maybe this is it, for those of us with forethought and determination, a chance to do something. Right.

Thanks for this post!

Sheila said...

I am curious to see what happens, but is how our nonprofit finds staff/interns and if the founder of it has this great idea, I see no reason it won't be developed successfully if we all pull together. Strength in numbers!

Marion said...

That would have made me so happy...someone just doing that random act of kindness. I'll bet you were happy all day, Sheila!

By the way, I couldn't get the audio to work for the video, but I get the gist. I'm glad you've sound happy!

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Palm Springs Savant said...

I've had that happen, and also done that at toll booths. Very similar reaction to the random act of kindness type thing.

Interesting post today Sheila, I enjoyed it