I am so enjoying the Intermountain Sustainability Summit today, hosted at Weber State University in Ogden, Utah. It feels electric to me to be with people that are smart and so committed to clean and sustainable energy living.
My part as facilitator is small. Inviting a bit of informal open space in which people can connect by calling their own conversation. And facilitating a bit of a networking conversation yet to come in the day.
However, my delight in participating is large. This morning’s keynote Bob Perkowitz, CEO and Founder of ecoAmerica, was delightful. And informative. And as is often how it is with people from this profession, needing to be skilled and telling both the sobering story and the encouraging story of climate change.
Bob shares, that due to climate change, the pine beetle population is thriving. In Colorado and Wyoming 100,000 trees die per day. Phenomenal, right. How discouraging and alarming. It goes along with a lot of other “bad news” from the science perspective.
Bob also shares an encouragement. 75,000 solar panels are going up per day in the USA. Wonderful, right. Encouraging, and so worth celebrating! Former President Jimmy Carter put them on the White House. Former President Ronald Reagan took them down. Thirty ish years later, 75,000 going up per day and solar farms growing.
There are some environments so populated with good people and in good causes, that I just feel smarter by being in the room. What a treat today that inspires oodles of questions worth engaging together about not only transforming a future, but doing so, in some cases, one little step, 10 solar panels, at a time.
I’m returning today — transitioning really — from cohosting QT in Cincinnati this last weekend, to participating in board meeting for The Circle Way. It’s an early morning ride with Quanita to get friend Rina Patel and I to the airport. It’s a flight that ironically stops in Salt Lake City (my home airport) where I change planes to go on to Seattle. It’s boarding the plane for Seattle only to learn of a “full ground stop” in Seattle. That means bad weather and they are not allowing flights to get near Seattle before something shifts. Me and about forty other people are using the plane to rest, do some work, read, etc. It’s not bad — just me in Row 19 and I have a power outlet.
QT, a creation by Q, Quanita, and me, T, Tenneson continues to have these foci and intents:
- to experiment with real-time, deep inquiry.
- to devote a weekend to the practice of being deliberately curious with friends.
- to connect more soulfully to what is important to you.
- to come into different relationship with stress and challenge.
- to interrupt unhelpful patterns and thoughts that restrict vibrancy and choice.
- to an ongoing annual series of dialogues that change human lives.
- to listen further to the whispers that come from soul.
The short of it is that I love this gathering. It’s honest. It’s simple. I learn things uniquely at QT that really come from a learning “field” — a shared energetic connection.
It was Quanita that offered these wise words this time.
“Most people think you have to be hard on the outside and soft on the inside. It’s about protecting what is delicate internally because the world is too rough. However, it’s just he opposite that is needed. Soft on the outside — to be able to encounter other and ourselves in relationship with others. And hard on the inside — meaning clear on what your purpose is and on what your contracts are.”
I’m grateful for Quanita’s wisdom, and the wisdom that comes from this group of 13 being so deliciously connected over the last two days that such gems can arise as more than cute words and slogans, and instead be felt as solid communal truths.
Wise words from a friend. It might just be that the friend is the group itself too!