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  • Writer's pictureKrista Kurth, Ph.D.

Envision the World You Want to Re-enter After the Shutdown

Updated: Sep 10, 2020

Apply Lessons Learned During Lockdown to Climate Action

Close up of an blue eye reflecting light

Many people, including me, have a deep sense that the world will not be the same when we emerge from our homes at the end of the global health crisis we are now experiencing.

The temporary shutdown to slow the spread of Covid-19 has already changed our habits, our lifestyles, and our mindsets in unexpected ways. I believe that we can learn from our shared pause.

We can use the new routines and norms we’ve adopted to create a more just, healthy, sustainable society, economy, and planet for all when we rejoin the world.

Solo person walking in a park

Let’s take stock. Here are some changes I’ve noticed. People are:

  • Slowing down

  • Spending more time with family

  • Walking in parks and falling back in love with nature

  • Cooking at home

  • Staying local

  • Being resilient

  • Doing more work online and remotely

  • Taking care of neighbors and nature

  • Being more conscious about choices, buying only what they need

  • Taking time for reflection, prayers, gratitude, and appreciation

  • Being generous, mindful, and working together for the good of all

multi-colored painted image of hands reaching out in service

What else have you noticed?

I think we've become clearer on what is most important. We’re remembering our deep interdependence (with each other and our environment). More than ever before, people understand that we are all in this together.

Even nature is having a chance to recover. Our collective slowdown has drastically reduced pollution and Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions from transportation (planes, trains, and cars) and industrial production. The air is clearer over major cities, and rivers and canals are running cleaner than they have been for many decades.

This is as it should be. As Thich Nhat Hanh teaches, “When we recognize the… beauty of Mother Earth, something is born in us, some kind of connection....The healing of the people should go together with the healing of the Earth.”

pink neon sign one top of green leaves saying "and breathe"
The healing of the people should go together with the healing of the Earth.”

These natural improvements are not something I want to give up when we resume our more regular lives. I want our global community and governments to identify ways to sustain these lower levels of pollution and decreased GHG emissions when the economy cranks back up.

We, as individuals, can also play a role in building a stronger, safer, fairer world—one that includes a clean, just economy; a resilient, fair food system; and cares for our precious planet.

In a time where we are thinking about surviving the pandemic, let’s pay attention to Charles Eisenstein’s message. “The important question is not 'what do we need to do to survive', but 'what world do we want to live in?”

When we recognize the power that we have to create the world we want to live in, then we can turn our visions into a living reality.

What is the world you want to live in once we are through the pandemic crisis?

Painted image of a healthy earth

I want to create a robust, resilient, regenerative world that is:

  • based on people falling back in love with Mother Earth

  • built by everyone and works for all of humanity and the planet

  • full of clean air, healthy habitats, and sustainable food systems

  • free of harmful pollution and zero GHG emissions

  • brimming with healthy oceans and flowing clean water

  • energized by clean renewable energy

  • community based–where we come together to solve our common problems, including the climate crisis

  • kind and compassionate

hand in the sunshine holding a small world

I invite you to envision the world you want too. It will take everyone’s vision, best intentions, and hard work to get to where we want to go-with both the corona virus and the climate crisis. This moment, while we celebrate the season of rebirth and wait for our emergence, is a great time to reflect on it.

And while we wait to emerge from our home chrysalises, I’ll leave you with the words from a song by the Five Stairsteps, “Ooh Child.”

Ooh child, things are gonna get easier. Ooh child, things will get brighter.

Someday, yeah, we'll put it together and we'll get it undone. Someday, when your head is much lighter.

Someday, yeah, we'll walk in the rays of a beautiful sun. Someday, when the world is much brighter.

Ooh, child.


I’d love to know what’s grabbing your attention or what questions are running through your mind. Let me know in the comments section. I’ll respond in one of my blog posts.

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All the best,

Krista / Eco-Omi

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