Omphaloskepsis

Happy New Year, everyone. This blog has kind of atrophied a bit, since I’ve started writing with my friends, Donya and Hils, over at Quench. My hope for 2020 is that Quench will go from strength to strength, but I think there’s probably still a role for more personal blogging.

Listen, I was today years old when I learned that there is, in fact, an ancient Greek word for ‘navel-gazing’ and apparently the act of gazing at one’s navel is supposed to provoke deep thought.

Seems fake.

Social media has been oozing with retrospection over the past few days which would be fine, if I ever thought we’d learn from it. At this exact moment in time, January the first, arbitrarily selected to be significant, there is probably is some worth in taking stock over the past year and the past decade.

The thing is, what’s in the past, is done. We can’t change it. We all have regrets, even if we don’t own up to them on social media. We all compare ourselves to other people and, too often, find ourselves lacking because, for some reason, modern life is a box-ticking exercise. (The thing is, there’s always one more box to tick.)

While looking back can be kind of fun, even if it’s just to make sure the past is getting smaller in the rear view mirror while we absolutely slam on the accelerator, looking forward is more important.

There’s a lot coming down the line, politically, in 2020, particularly for our neighbours to the east and to the west, but there are other, global concerns. (Despite what certain former British Prime Ministers may have said, we are all citizens of the world.)

I hope 2020 is the year when we take climate change a hell of a lot more seriously than we’re doing now. Australia is burning and Bangladesh is sinking. It’s too easy to think that we, as individuals, can’t do much and it’s too infuriating to think about how corporations won’t do much.

I know, in 2020, I want to do something, even if it’s something small. Whether it’s ongoing donations to the World Wildlife Federation, or funding the planting of trees, or buying local produce, or cutting down on the amount of meat I eat, or using keep cups, I want to do something.

Not everyone is in a position to do something but for those of us who can?

Let’s change the world a little.

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