The biggest momentous world game-changer since landing on the moon begins within the next year, and this one is much closer to home… our Ocean Cleanup! This brainchild of Dutch teenager, now 23 year old Boyan Slat, is the largest ever environmental rescue. Indeed, Boyan announced his highly optimistic project update this week leading up to Mothers Day. The Ocean Cleanup project is two years ahead of schedule. Happy Mothers Day Gaia! Especially relevant, 50% of the oceans plastic is expected to be removed within 5 years when the project is fully operational. Doesn’t that bring a lot of hope to our world?
Why He Did It
While diving in Greece, Boyan found more plastic than fish. He cared about the implications for the world and his generation’s future. Then, Boyan took the road less travelled. He seriously investigated the issue. Consequently, he did a high school project to study the problem and why it was so difficult to clean up. He kept thinking about and studying the issue, even as he went off to study aerospace engineering. To clean up with conventional methods of boats and nets would take thousands of years. He realized in high school, there had to be a be a better alternative.
“Please don’t tell me we can’t clean this mess up, together.”~ Bryan Slat
Imagine the obstacles this young man had to overcome to bring his epic planet-saving project on board! Boyan championed the ocean clean up despite hearing it was an impossible task. The consensus was to focus on stopping more plastic from entering the waterways. Forget trying to clean up the damage that had already been done. Rather than being deterred, Boyan kept his focus. “Most people involved in the topic were absolutely certain that cleanup would be impossible, even though nobody has ever seriously investigated” Boyan said in his TedXTalk at Delft. He was repeatedly told “It can’t be done”. However, Boyan perservered. He designed, created and obtained crowd funding for the ocean cleanup. The system pilot is scheduled by the end of 2017, with cleanup starting in 2018.
How He Did It
Boyan conducted a variety of studies and sought out world experts for help. He identified 50 questions to be answered for his idea to become a feasible project. He looked for solutions within the obstacles, themselves. Hence the ocean currents, initially considered an issue, became part of the answer. Currents help attract and concentrate the plastic. He discovered much of the plastic concentrates close to the surface within a couple of feet. Accordingly, the plastic catching equipment is an array of floating barriers with very long arms that run just a few feet deep. This collects the plastic and allows fish to readily swim underneath. The array directs and concentrates the plastic, which is extracted and shipped to land. To the end of making this a self-sustaining ocean cleanup, the plastic will be recycled into branded products. We will be able to support the ocean cleanup, while continuing to raise our awareness!
Gratitude for Boyan Slat
Consider the significance of inventing a way to clean up the enormously vast ocean, establishing a foundation and obtaining multimillion dollar funding starting out as a teenager. Isn’t it awe-inspiring? In gratitude, thank you Boyan for:
1. A clear environmental vision and leadership for the worlds’ oceans
2. Offering hope and inspiration to the world
3. Showing us the importance of supporting powerful visions of young people
4. Helping us understand the difference one person can make
5. Doing no harm to plankton, fish, the full food chain, including humans as part of the desired outcome
6. Communicating the project in your non-Native language
7. Asking great questions to ensure all angles are covered
8. Consulting world experts, professors and all of us
9. Using the plastic circulating the ocean for years or decades for the cover of your How the Oceans Clean Themselves study
10. Never giving up despite many other people’s proclamations of “it can’t be done”
For all of us, what Boyan accomplished to date is so profound and wonderful! Big progress solving a very serious world problem is closer to reality. This gives me faith that other workable solutions for world problems can be found. Do you have a big dream where answers possibly lie within the obstacles? How does Boyan’s work inspire you?Read More »
Look around! Can you name three things that you are grateful for in your immediate surroundings? There are so many things to be grateful for that you could probably name many, many things if you really tried! The thing is, we get caught up in the lack in our life, or the worries and ‘what’s not going right’. The good news is that a regular gratitude practice helps bring us into greater harmony with ourselves, our relationships, our work, our play and our Soul!
My Gratitude Journey
I have studied and worked under the tutelage of Ann Paquin, founder of Dancing Gratitude, for more than 10 years now and have seen her inner transformation as a result of a regular gratitude practice. Gratitude, she has taught me, helps us shift our habitual negative or worry-focused thinking to find the pearl in any particular moment. Keeping gratitude top of mind allows for more enjoyment, more peace, more hope, and more fun!
After personally researching the health benefits of gratitude, I decided to try the Three Things practice. That is, at the end of each day, I think of three things that I am grateful for and write them down.
One day I wrote that I was grateful for sunny warm weather, walks on the beach and my dog! Choosing Facebook as my venue, I included a fun photograph or video to accompany the day’s blessings.
What I learned from this practice is the following:
* There are more things than we can even imagine to be grateful for on a moment-to-moment basis
* A gratitude practice intentionally shifts our focus throughout the day as we “look for the pony” as Ann would say in anything that is happening;
* Finally, other people benefit from sharing our Gratitude, and the idea catches on!
When we collectively choose to practice gratitude, our creativity heightens, and we are not as bogged down by the old familiar ways of thinking.
I look forward to continuing this practice and invite others to start or end their day with Three Things, and see what happens!
Jane “Blessed” Hart is a journalist, consultant and artist who enjoys writing, painting, and her new pup, Precious. Check out her website www.myblessedpath.com/
Read More »
When you practice focusing on one gratitude, it can feel really good. Did you know there is an inherent power in choosing gratitudes that can also support your dreams and the change you want to see in life? This year has been challenging in so many ways. These challenges have let us know that we are all needed to make this world a better place. We each have our role. So, how might you invite gratitude for the extra support and help in feeling better, as well as, for spreading hope and good cheer this Thanksgiving holiday season?Read More »
With World Gratitude Day fast approaching, this is a great time to start or deepen your gratitude practice. See how Nature comes to support our invitation for bringing more gratitude into daily activities and heightening activities you love in our vlog below.Read More »
AMAZING GRATITUDE! Gratitude helps us to be happy, and surprisingly, a regular gratitude practice builds our emotional resilience for coping with difficulties. An Unexpected Bonus.
By really feeling gratitude (not just thinking about it), we train ourselves to look for what is right in our life. Being present and breathing with gratitude relaxes our nervous system. It connects us with our Higher Self giving us access to greater intelligence and support. Different ways of looking at things are revealed, which can be so helpful in the world today.Read More »
On a Nature walk, we usually feel connection, beauty and oneness. With gratitude, all of these things expand! As our receptivity to the experience increases so does the depth and expansion of the experience. On a recent nature walk on the Pope and Talbot trails in the historic town of Port Gambel, Kitsap, Washington, we were greeted by dancing eagles. We felt more in tune and blended with each other and Nature, and we could sense Nature loving us back as we brought gratitude into our experience. We felt inspired to interweave sharing with silence. Inspired to have fun, we also made sound tracks of waterfalls and our foot steps on different surfaces. GRATEFUL for HIKING with others and shared experiences of being in nature! GRATEFUL for GRATITUDE!Read More »
By Ann Paquin
When it comes to tax time preparation, gratitude is probably not the first thought you have. Can you imagine how tax time gratitude power could help? A regular gratitude practice offers grace and power when least expected. How do you want to feel when doing your taxes?Read More »