The future will be fantastic. I'm already looking forward to it. We will have clean energy almost free and available everywhere. We will have enough food for everyone, and it will be ecologically and sustainably farmed. We will gaze in wonder over and into our clean oceans, free of microplastics and rubbish. We will do the things we love and give the rest to machines. We will live in a healthy environment with growing biodiversity. And we will use technology as a tool to make our lives more livable, to evolve and to shape our world.
Spinning? Well, we don't know what the future will be like. But we do know today how it works with focus. What we focus on becomes more present. We begin to find evidence for it and develop solutions to it, usually quite unconsciously. Freely according to the motto: The evidence proves it. If you buy a new car, you suddenly see it driving around everywhere.
Expectant parents see family happiness and offers everywhere that they had not noticed before. Software testers see weak points everywhere that no one else notices. So we build our reality around the focus - a salute to the radical constructivists around Ernst von Glasersfeld and Heinz von Foerster.
But for years now we have been so excessively nurturing our problem trance: I have no money. No old-age provision. No sense. Too much work. And it sucks. I'm cut off. I can't do it. The colleague doesn't like me. The others are all stupid. The world is going down the drain. Blockchain will deplete our energy reserves. Real estate crisis. Financial crisis. Autonomous vehicles will become human killers. Our habitat is collapsing. The next pandemic is surely just around the corner. Don't look up - there could be another asteroid.
Keep looking at it, and it will get bigger and bigger. The problems are growing, becoming ever more enormous, burdensome and overwhelming. The only problem is that there is no solution. This applies to us on a small scale, in our departments and companies, as well as to our society. "Problems can never be solved with the same mindset that created them." This quote is attributed to Einstein and sums up the dilemma.
A new narrative
If we want solutions, we need a new narrative. A positive story that we tell ourselves. For our lives, our businesses, our society. Set the focus differently.
I am an optimist for the future. I have chosen the positive narrative of human history. For the one of visions, wishes and utopias. Because I believe that this view will enable us to find better solutions to current challenges.
The pioneers of human history were always those who did not believe that something was not possible. They kept going. And this is the seed I want to sow. To awaken, accompany, encourage, inspire and motivate the little pioneer in us to keep going.
This narrative is also accompanied by an attitude. What could the cornerstones of such an attitude look like? Perhaps a future mindset that is characterised by:
- Humanity through connectedness, acceptance and the dismantling of thought prohibitions.
- Curiosity about technologies and innovations. Trying things out, being creative with this immense potential. Making them available as open source/data/everything.
- Personal development to bring these worlds together.
- People and companies who courageously take responsibility.
And now: Let the story unfold!