On April 15 1979 at 6.20am, Goran woke with a start. He heard a cracking noise. As the walls started moving around him, instinct kicked in and he leapt from his bed and threw himself out of his bedroom window, just as the walls of his house started to collapse.
It was a 6.9 magnitude earthquake that destroyed Goran’s home along with most of the buildings in the beautiful coastal town of Budva, Montenegro in the former Yugoslavia. Thankfully and unbelievably – no-one died.
Goran is my husband. He was 15 at the time of the earthquake and he remembers it vividly.
His family brick home was destroyed. Over the next two years he and his family built a new home on the same site. It was a different home, built of concrete. A solid home built to withstand earthquakes. They were never going to build a replica of their original home. They had an opportunity to build something better and that’s what they did.
Around the world in present times, we’re living through tumultuous change. Business-as-usual is over. There will be no going back to the same old.
Like Goran’s family after the earthquake, we will have to rebuild when we eventually come through this. We have an opportunity now to reflect on the kind of kind of businesses we want to imagine for the future. The kind of world we want to live in. The kind of lives we want to live.
So do we choose businesses and an economy driven by relentless pressure for growth and profits?
Do we choose the pursuit of ever-increasing wealth and acquisition of status symbols, knowing that we have fellow citizens who are struggling to feed, clothe and put a roof over the heads of their children?
Do we put our collective heads back in the sand at the pain and misfortune of others as we chase after our promised path paved with gold?
Do we go back to polluting our rivers, oceans and the air around us, logging our forests? Do we continue our trajectory towards trashing the very planet we need to live on?
Or do we use this time to reassess what kind of society we want to live in?
I know I’m not alone in wanting to re-imagine a better, kinder, more conscious world and a better way of living.
I think now could be a good time to do just that.
What do you think?