On the 23rd April, Bob Doppelt will be launching his new book, From Me to We: The Five Transformative Commitments Required To Rescue The Planet, Your Organization, And Your Life. The launch and book signing will be held in the Cullen Room at Busboys and Poets in Washington DC and co-sponsored by NWF.
There has already been some interest created around Doppelt’s book and, in his talk at the Garrison Institute, he tells us a bit about it and how and why change should be instilled within our lives today.
In his address to the audience, Doppelt stresses that we need to motivate changes in our thinking and behaviours, in order to make the changes that allow us to move from “me” to “we”. He highlights the psychology of extreme individualism that is present in, particularly western, society today. It is important that we move away from this in order to act as agents of change, in relation to such issues as climate change, and motivate other people to do the same.
The author goes on to state that people need a set of principles to follow in order to understand the complexity and chaos around us. We need a “natural law of sustainability” in order to make this transition from “me” to “we”. Doppelt presents his recommendation of the 5 commitments required for such a shift – requirements based on spiritual traditions, including Buddhism, as well as principles of psychology and social psychology. Thus our focus will move from the individual (me) to broader communities (we).
In today’s overcrowded, over-polluted, over-consumed and over-heating world, helping people, helping ourselves and motivating others to change their thinking and behaviour is probably the most important thing we can do.
Nothing exists on its own in this world. Everything is created by and sustained by something else.
Doppelt’s 5 Commitments
- 1 – See the systems you are part of (both ecological and social) but also help other people envision them.
- 2 – Account for all of the consequences of your actions.
- 3 – Abide by humanity’s long-held universal moral principles.
- 4 – Acknowledge trustee obligations and take responsibility for the continuation of all life.
- 5 – Choose your own destiny.
Furthermore, he emphasises that humans are good at changing – we wouldn’t be here today if we weren’t!
In order to further illustrate how to make such a change, Doppelt presents a pyramid of change. This reveals that at the core of our ways of thinking and acting are the beliefs instilled in us from childhood; it is here that the change really needs to happen in order for it to be long-lasting.
Change, he says, starts with “disinterest”. This is the starting point, before we open ourselves to the possibility of change. Then we move onto “deliberation”, where we weigh out the pros and cons of making this change. Should we find that the pros outweigh the cons, Doppelt states we move onto “design”, whereby a plan is made to enforce it and often we make a public commitment to the change. Then we move to “doing” where we enact the plan by breaking old habits and initiating new ones. The final stage is “defending”, where we announce the fact we have changed.
View Doppelt’s speech here.
Bob Doppelt is Executive Director of The Resource Innovation Group, a sustainability and climate change education, research, and technical assistance organization affiliated with the Center for Sustainable Communities at Willamette University, where he is also a Senior Fellow. He is also the author of Leading Change toward Sustainability: A Change Management Guide for Business, Government and Civil Society (Greenleaf Publishing, 2003, 2010).
Buy From Me to We direct from Greenleaf Publishing and receive an extra 10% discount on the paperback version and 10% of PDF eBook. Just use voucher code FMTW49 at checkout.