When I started putting together this site, it dawned on me that I could actually pull in a little bit of my professional experience. Who would have thought that tech experience would actually apply to healthy, conscious living? Maybe it’s a stretch, but here goes:
A few years back, I had the amazing opportunity of developing an innovation program at HP. The idea was that our org (approximately 1200 people at the time) was so busy with our day-to-day business that we were left with no time for innovation. Innovation, of course, is what started that company. So my girl, Shelley, and I traveled the world, engaging all kinds of smart folks to help us solve business problems. We got them out of their comfort zones and thinking out of the box. We brainstormed, and tried out different ideas. It was an incredible opportunity to meet tons of new people from different cultures, LEARN from each other and solve problems together!
That’s so similar to what I was hoping to accomplish with Wise Apples that I figured, we should talk about personal innovation – healthful, conscious-style!
Hang on, just what IS innovation?
Merriam-Webster says the following:
: a new idea, device, or method
First, let’s assume that we have some stuff we need to figure out: We as humans, and we as individuals – different problems maybe, but problems that need solutions nonetheless. Seems pretty straightforward. For an example let’s look at our personal health and wellness. Maybe we have trouble sleeping, skin issues, backaches, headaches, stomach aches…aches aches aches!! Pretty common problems, eh? Innovation asks us to look not just at the manifestation of a problem but HOW it came to be. What is leading to my insomnia? Why is my back aching? And then, of course, what can I do about it?
The enterprise that does not innovate inevitably ages and declines. And in a period of rapid change such as the present…the decline will be fast — Peter Drucker
This can be applied to individuals as well. While we can’t fully prevent aging, there are plenty of things we can do to help us age with as much health and vitality as possible! So if we take what Drucker said, and interpret it for people instead of enterprises, I hear this message: The person or population that does not innovate will QUICKLY age and decline.
Take the current rise in disease in our population, or the decline in environmental conditions all over the world. It’s pretty easy to see that if we don’t innovate, we will quickly decline.
Wow, totally depressing right? Well, yes, BUT!! But we have the opportunity to apply new methods to our madness with the hope of more positive outcomes.
Hmmmm change? We’ve talked about that before, and change is scary stuff. But change can be valuable!
This time, let’s use our Earth as an example. We know by now that the burning of fossils fuels, and the application of chemical pesticides to our food, both have negative effects on the environment. Problems such as poor air quality, water pollution, and resulting disease are rampant. If we keep doing what we’re doing, we decline, but we may find value in changing our habits. Sustainable energy options can help power us AND diminish our air and water pollution problems. Supporting local organic farms will help decrease pollution as well as disease AND will support local farmers over factory farms. Triple the value!
It’s the same for our own selves. Take me for example, I’ve had insomnia and digestive issues my entire life. It wasn’t until I was diagnosed with GERD at the age of 27 that I woke up to the dietary problems I was facing. My wake up call came in the form of a doctor telling me that I would be on GERD prescription meds my entire life. I simply would not accept that, so through years of trial and effort, I have found a diet that controls the GERD without any need for any medication – at all – EVER.
This type of ongoing personal development requires continuous innovation. What may work best for you today, may not be the best for your tomorrow, as circumstances will continue to change.
We don’t have to accept that our current scenario is just ‘how things are’. We are so lucky to have the opportunity to learn and recreate ourselves.
And we must be the change we wish to see in ourselves. It is up to us to embody the changes, and be the person we truly wish to be. Amazing how the words of a spiritual leader fighting for justice in the world, also have a subtext of innovation! It’s everywhere. The options are endless, and continue to evolve. It’s inspiring and energizing. To be the best we can be, we need to get up, and set a better world in motion. Walk the talk, and be leaders. Empower ourselves and others. Stretch outside of our comfort zones, and see just what kind of value we can create for ourselves and our world.
You and I, let’s lead; embrace life’s changes, and enjoy the ride.
For more inspiration on innovating your self, check out the following:
- What is Personal Innovation?11 Practical Ideas for Personal Innovation
- Lessons From Mark Zuckerberg’s Personal Innovation Lifestyle
- Why I Dumped My Smartphone – 2 Months Into Building My Personal Innovation Lifestyle
Feed the babies
Who don’t have enough to eat
Shoe the children
With no shoes on their feet
House the people
Livin’ in the street
Oh, there’s a solution – Steve Miller