Helen’s CreativeMornings activity
If something makes you angry, do something about it.
Once a week, be bored. Go and sit outside somewhere for an hour without your phone. Just sit there. It's tough, but you start to notice your own story and the things that you're telling yourself. And then you start to dream and have ideas again.
That's not what Einstein did. He rode his bike. He was a dreamer. He wondered around and let himself have idle time, and came up with his beautiful concepts. So I try and do that.
Imagine van Gogh getting home with his bunch of flowers and just putting them on the table and picking up his Instagram feed. Or Monet sitting in front of a lake with the water lilies and thinking that's nice but what's on Twitter?
We're on our devices all the time. We don't let ourselves sit idle and get bored and dream enough anymore, especially our children.
The only way we're going to get through this is to encourage more dreaming. More creativity. More imagination.
We've become so reductionist now, with the way we look at the planet. It's like Shakespeare - if you looked at it through a scientific lens, it's just 26 letters on a page rearranged. But why we love Shakespeare is because of the meaning we give it, and the beauty, and the wonder it evokes. We need to do the same with the planet. For too long we've just looked at it as a cold rock floating through galaxy; through a very scientific lens. But as we know, it's much more than that. It's this interconnected, interwoven, rich ecosystem of life that supports us, and that we're a part of. That's the language we've got to talk about if we're going to get through this.
If you go back pre-scientific revolution, we did tell a very different story about our planet. There's a wonderful language that different cultures used to use about the planet. We know that Aboriginals used to use the word 'custodians' of the land. The Egyptian culture and the Native American Indian: 'Mother Earth' and 'Father Sky'. The Chinese referred to themselves as 'reverent guests' of the land. There's a beautiful story that we just don't hear anywhere enough about, about an admiral Zheng who in 1436, sailed the world for 33 years with 27,000 men on 300 ships. Not to conquer, but to share animals, exchange goods, explore the wonders of the world and bring it back to his empire. Columbus did it again 50 years later, with a very different story.
The biggest surprise I learned was the role of educating girls and empowering women on climate change, which is very rarely linked together. Statistics show that if a girl doesn't get to complete her education, shes pulled out of school for a range or reasons - religion or to work - she'll have 5 or more children. But if she gets to complete her education, gets access to reproductive health services, work opportunities, she then gets to choose when and how many children she'll have, and that number comes down to 2. The UN says that's a difference of 1.1 billion people by 2050, which has a profound impact on our resources and climate change. So we should empower girls anyway - that's a great thing to do - but we get this lovely bonus that helps the environment at the same time.
My favourite stat is that you'd have to eat eight oranges a day to get the same level of vitamin A that a single orange had 60 years ago, because of the health of the soil.
What I wanted to do is change that narrative, or at least add to it. We need to acknowledge that things are bad, but a motivator for all of us is hope. Any psychology textbook will tell you that... How important it is as human beings to have the possibility of a better future or a better outcome. That's what moves us forward.
Our thoughts create our reality.
The joy we get from material things is very temporary, but the joy we get from giving is permanent.
We can look at how frequencies can really uplift us. How frequencies and songs and music and sounds can make us feel nostalgic or emotional or sad. But then I started looking at the music which was just designed to make us feel connected to our essence; how to use sound to connect back to who we are.
That frequency we attune ourselves to changes the quality of our health, it changes the quality of our emotional state, it changes the quality of our mental state.
Compassion isn't something that we do in isolation, it's something that is all about connectedness.