Firstly, Happy New Year to all our friends, customers and readers.
You can’t miss the new year symptoms, with all the advertising that promises to help us achieve better, more complete versions of ourselves – from dating sites guaranteeing love, to diet books offering a slimmer you on a plate. But how about taking stock of what is going right, or what are the strengths that we can build on, rather than just looking at what is wrong? How would this approach change things?
It’s an approach advocated by the American journalist, Ellen Goodman. She said: “We spend January 1st walking through our lives, room by room, drawing up a list of work to be done, cracks to be patched. Maybe this year, to balance the list, we ought to walk through the rooms of our lives...not looking for flaws, but for potential.”
And no less a wise man than Socrates said, “The secret of change is to focus all your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new”. A few years ago, I heard Colin Campbell, the South African healer speak at the Gaia Foundation. He put forward this approach too, saying that if we began to fill our lives with good, then the not-so-good would naturally drop away. So for example, if we wanted to eat more healthily, the secret of success was to begin introducing the more healthy items into our diet, and the more unhealthy would gradually get eased out.
It might not be an approach that delivers a slimmer, better you in 30 days – guaranteed! But it is likely to have longer lasting results and at its heart be more truly revolutionary, rather than a quick fix. It’s certainly more suited with the way we do things at Po-Zu. From our beginnings almost 10 years ago, we have sought to do things differently - to build the new, rather than just tinker round the edges of an existing system. Whilst we can’t be completely optimistic about the state of the world, with even the New York Times acknowledging that it has been a “grim” 2015 in many respects, we did end the year with a certain spring in our step. We not only met our crowdfunding target, but roundly exceeded it! We are grateful to all our new shareholders and are looking forward to turning our plans into reality in 2016. These include building our team, creating new collections and establishing new commercial partnerships so we can get our Po-Zu's out to more customers.
At almost the same time we reached our crowdfunding target, the COP21 climate change agreement was announced in Paris, a momentous coming together of 196 nations. The agreement sends out a powerful signal that the end of “business as usual” is nigh, and many large companies are already setting ambitious targets - over 50 have set targets to use 100% renewable power. We hope that 2016 will see further building on the progress that has been made towards a more sustainable future.
Bill Gates said that “Most people overestimate what they can do in one year and underestimate what can they do in ten years.” Building on our strengths and building the new is about the long game. Here’s to seeing what we can do, individually and collectively, to make 2016 a strong building block for a better future.