2015 was, to me, the most divisive year in recent memory. In all sorts of ways; climate change, environmentalism, terrorism, politics – on the world stage or here at home, the Syrian refugee crisis, the destabilization of the EU, Donald Freaking Trump, for God’s sake. You name it – everyone had an opinion on it. And, in most cases, there seemed to be no middle ground. Just polar opposites.
I saw friendships ended over political views, over stances on the refugee crisis, and over whether or not climate change even existed.
This was very distressing for me to see. I couldn’t believe the hatred that was being spewed out at an alarming rate on the internet. Myself, I like to think of the internet as a tool to be used for good. Fundraising for charity, bringing awareness to causes, connecting with friends and family. Witnessing one another’s joy, and the small moments that make life such a grand adventure.
But sometimes it feels like the bad guys are winning. They aren’t, of course, they’ve just been given a much larger soapbox to stand and rant on these days, it seems.
So how do we combat this flood of hatred and remind ourselves that people are essentially good, and life is essentially joyful? We find common ground. We find a connection, no matter how small, and embrace that.
I’m not saying to turn a blind eye to all of the terrible, sorrowful things we’ve seen take place over the past year. But I just can’t see how sitting behind a keyboard angrily hammering out our opinions (in all caps, of course) in the hopes of changing someone’s point of view, can change a single thing.
So, this year, I hope you find that little bit of common ground to stand on with someone half a world away, by sharing a moment with the world.
That’s what the Worldwide Minute is about for me. For the third year in a row, the Worldwide Minute will take place at March 15th, at 5:47pm (in whatever time zone you happen to be existing in). People around the globe will stop, take a photo of whatever mundane, ordinary, extraordinary, amazing, small, life-changing thing that is happening in their life at that very moment. And then they will share that moment with the world. And, like the past two years I’ve hosted this event, we’ll see people connecting. Over something. Over nothing. Over the view out of their kitchen window at dinnertime. Over their granddaughter’s new hat. The loss of a loved one. A new addition to the family. Anything. And it’s a beautiful thing.
I hope you’ll join us for this year’s event, #worldwideminute2016. I’d love to see your minute:)
*Feature Image copyright Laurie Higgins, Cape Cod, MA, USA. Provided for the #worldwideminute2015. Used with permission.