Updated: Aug 31
I’ve had to give a lot of thought lately to what I stand for, what passions I want to pursue, and which direction I want to go. My thoughts are all over the place but they all come back to environmental awareness and global sustainability. In today’s world it is so easy to get caught up in what’s happening minute by minute. But these minutes are fleeting. The future still encroaches upon us and I want to make sure the next generation has something better to work with while helping those who live here today.
One of my favorite assignments in grad school so far was creating a Personal Manifesto. I know it doesn’t seem very “sustainability” oriented and it‘s not (it was actually part of a communications assignment) but it did help me develop a sense of who I am and what I stand for. It provided some much-needed direction in this crazy world we’re living in right now.
I have been going back and forth about sharing my personal manifesto. It does seem so personal. But it was such an encouraging experience and kickstarted a lot of personal growth and self-awareness so I decided to share because I wanted to encourage others to consider writing one themselves.
So how does one go about writing a personal manifesto? It starts with a private journey into your own heart and mind. What do you value? What are you passionate about? What and/or who do you want to stand up for? What are your hopes and dreams for this world? These are the questions I tried to answer in my own manifesto.
Writing a personal manifesto is not something that only adults could do either. This is definitely something you could get your kids to do. Let them think about what’s going on in the world and how they want to be a part of the solution. Because getting kids to start thinking about this stuff earlier rather than later can make a big difference in the world!
And there is no rhyme or reason to how you write one (as you can see from mine below). Let your creative juices roll. Add images. Rhyme (or don’t). Put it to song. Whatever you do, let it be the result of a personal journey that you take while on the path to renewal.
The Personal Manifesto of Trish Porter
In a world where I can be anything,
I choose to be kind,
No longer sitting idly by,
But a voice of equity, equality, and justice for all,
Acting on my convictions.
I will accept others as they are,
The young and the old,
The educated and the uneducated,
The rich, the poor, and everyone in between,
Knowing we’re all in this together
And we will prevail.
I will respect others,
And their beliefs.
I will be a friend,
To trees and to wildlife,
To the oppressed and the outcast,
To the friendless,
To those who are like me,
And to those who are not.
I will respect and appreciate the natural world,
Consuming only what I need,
Treading lightly upon the earth,
Allowing wildlife to remain wild.
I will creatively encourage change in the world,
A voice of human change that can lead to climate change,
A voice of equality in an unequal and racist world,
Living and leading by example.