June 30th, 2010 9:04 AM by Lehel S.
10 Life Lessons Learned from the BP Oil Spill - By Sam Etkin of SelfGrowth.com
In the wake of the BP oil spill, we face a major environmental disaster. Hundreds of animals are dead, and even more are in danger. It could take years for affected areas to fully recover.
As cleanup efforts are ongoing, engineers are still trying to work out the best method to control or stop the oil. Countless environmental lessons can be gleaned from this catastrophe, and BP and the nation as a whole will hopefully learn from the mistakes that were made.
While the focus is currently centered on what lessons the spill has taught us about drilling, safety, and the environment, we can also gather a number of lessons about life when we step back and look at the big picture. We have asked contributors to share with us some life lessons they have learned and questions for the general population to reflect on as a result of the oil spill.
1.) It should not take a disaster like the BP oil spill to remind us about interdependence and responsibility. We must stop taking responsibility after the fact and using it as an act of contrition - but rather proactively engage in responsible decision making which considers the ramifications of our actions before we engage in them. Apology does not obviate responsibility. Increasingly, technology and urbanization have allowed us to distance ourselves from other people and other living things. When we honored our tribal origins - we were far more aware of how our actions impacted not just ourselves, but everyone and everything around us. My kindergartener warns me to carefully discard plastic, lest a dolphin choke. At the end of the day, taking responsibility means embedding our actions in a context of other, rather than self. 6 year olds get that. CEOs should too.
2.) The more risk you have and the more groups involved, the more you put systems in place to check, re-check and re-check what is going on in great detail. This applies to any part of life, health, environment, business, relationships, spiritual life, workplace issues, and everything else. This is no time to hang out in la la land. Get into the nitty gritty.
Dr. Linne Bourgethttp://www.whatyousayiswhatyouget.com
3.) Spiritually, everything happens for a reason and there is always a higher positive purpose, so stay tuned and look for it. Be careful not to send more negative energy or judgment into the Gulf, but send them positive thoughts of healing for people, economy, and environment.
4.) Do scenario planning IN ADVANCE for what might happen and pre-test your solutions so you can mitigate the negative consequences for all involved when the crisis comes. Working in very difficult circumstances, do not assume you can easily fix what crises may erupt.
5.) Just as BP execs are scrambling, so should we. What part of you is leaking energy so profusely it cannot be controlled? How much of your life and the lives of others will be destroyed because you refused to move on to more sustainable forms of energy? What once was your black gold? Pounds of caffeine or sugar, drugs or drama? Hanging onto a deadly job? A harmful relationship? The hole has burst open. Nothing will close it. Is it too late to repair the damage? When will you finally let go and move on? What will it take?
** To read the rest of this article and to post your own life lessons, go here.