We came across this video from TEDxSF the other day. In it, Louie Schwartzberg talks about his work over the years as one of the world’s great time-lapse nature photographers. The video he shows the audience is, indeed, amazing. Yet he goes on to talk about how the beauty of nature fills him with gratitude for the opportunity to live in this world.
It seems that each day, month and year we as individuals and organizations are focused on the crises and problems in front of us. People are hungry. Animals are hurt. Wildlands are logged and mined. We all need help to stop it. And we need that help right now. The pace of change and threats seems only to increase. People need more. Organizations are struggling to stay afloat. We must act. Now.
For nonprofit fundraisers and marketers, the reality is that crisis works. And people only give money when asked. So we create dire threats to our communities (this isn’t too hard to do) and send email after email about those crises.
But we don’t often spend time and energy weaving in real beauty and gratitude. We need to tell stories of hope and success, not just threats. There is magic in beauty and gratitude. Without it, we live in a world that has only crisis. We foster cynicism in our constituents and staff, which leads to ambivalence. Grab the opportunities to show gratitude and bring hope to people. Perhaps this video will help inspire that in you, as it did us.