Nakhon Nayok, Thailand
October 4, 2019
I had the great honor of being a speaker at this year’s GGMUN 3.0 symposium and conference for young leaders. 260 delegates from 40 countries took part in this important event to tackle the challenge of solving 17 Global Goals as set by the United Nations. These inspiring, bright highschool and university students came together in Nakhon Nayok, Thailand for 3 days of sharing ideas and solutions and to discuss actions to set forth for a better future.
260 delegates from 40 countries took part in this important event to tackle the challenge of solving 17 Global Goals as set by the United Nations.
Besides meeting so many wonderful participants and organizers, as well as volunteers, it was also a great pleasure to meet the other two speakers – Mr. Mushtaq Ahmed Memon, Regional Coordinator, United Nations Environment Programme, and Mr. A.G. Saño, Artist and Climate Change Activist @whaleboy2000. Both of these incredible people have inspired me to be more fearless and persistent in the face of the global warming crisis and to continue using my title for the improvement of our environment.
A.G. Saño informed me that 1/4 of all methane emitted into the atmosphere via greenhouse gasses come from the agriculture industry. The rest of it is produced by burning fossil fuels for energy and transportation, amongst others. So what can we do, as individuals, to lower the output of greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere? One idea is to consume less meat and animal products. Consider doing meatless Mondays (or any other days) or choose to go vegan. On a daily basis, reduce your electricity consumption by turning off lights and air conditioners when not in use; use other modes of transport besides your car more often; and reduce single-use plastics (cups, straws, bottles, food boxes, etc) in your home and office.
If we are to reach the Global Goals by 2035, change needs to start immediately, and change needs to start with each one of us!
A huge Thank You to Ahmad Fauzi, General Event Director of International Global Network, and his fantastic team for inviting me to be part of this monumental event.
My address to the delegates
Below is my speech which I delivered to the delegates, entitled:
You ARE the future; You CREATE your future; You must take ACTION for your future.
“You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” Mahatma Gandhi
The great leader of peace and equality, Mahatma Gandhi said these words as a reminder to each one of us, to work on ourselves first and foremost before expecting any outer change.
Today, you are here to try to solve some of the world’s biggest issues facing humanity. But before you start on these ambitious aspirations, I’d like you to go inward and do some introspection about your own mindset and attitude in regards to these challenges.
There are 17 Global Goals that we are all committed to reaching together as a global family. But what one thing can we all be held responsible to change on an individual level? I believe that one change is our consciousness. Although in spiritual terms, we also share this aspect of ourselves with every other human being as the “collective consciousness”, each person is accountable for working to evolve themselves alone.
Today I’d like to talk to you about how you can be the change you wish to see in the world. About how you can become a role model to your network of peers by being the light of hope and optimism. And how you can shape the world around you with your intentions and focused action.
You ARE the future; You CREATE your future; You must take ACTION for your future.
What is your current outlook on the world? Are you an optimist or a pessimist? Or do you consider yourself somewhere in between, as a “realist”?
How many of you would like to think more positively? It is, after all, important to have a positive outlook towards all the problems we are trying to solve, if we are to be successful. But how do you stay positive in the face of so many crises?
First of all, you have to remind yourself that negative thinking is counter-productive to your goals, and that it will not help you in any way to achieve anything. Our thoughts are very powerful predictors of reality – what you put out there in the form of thought will usually come back to you in physical form. So thinking positively, no matter how hopeless the situation may be, can only help attract great ideas, solutions and people into your world. Create a vision in your mind of what you are trying to achieve with a positive outcome, and keep that vision strong whenever doubt or fear sneak up on you. What’s even more powerful, is to transform that vision onto a physical canvas. How about making a vision board by finding photos in magazines and sticking them on a board along with your action plan and make flow charts and graphics of how you will achieve it? If you are a good artist, you can draw or paint your desired reality and keep that picture somewhere visible where you can get inspired by what you are trying to achieve. Before any product manifests into reality, it starts in the mind and then gets transferred into a material form through pen and paper or a computer graphic with a sketch or blueprint. You can do the same for any one of your goals – make a blueprint for it.
We attract what we want into our reality, first with our thoughts and intentions, and then we manifest that thought into form by creating it with our hands. That’s why I encourage each one of you to design your vision and put it down on paper. Write it down, draw it, plan it out and set that intention high in your mind to achieve it. I do this every time I have a dream I want to actualize. When I set out to compete to win the biggest beauty contest in the world, when I wanted to start my own business and when I set out to find my perfect partner in life, it all started with writing down that goal on paper and making a detailed list of things to do.
Keep your vision strong by revisiting it daily – look at your plan or your board or drawing. This will make you achieve the goal faster and give you renewed motivation. That will also attract positive emotions and thoughts to help you in your mission. An idea for you is to take one of the global goals and make a list of things you can start doing today by yourself and encourage others through social media to do the same for the benefit of that goal. I’m doing that with my pledge to live a more environmentally conscious lifestyle and reducing my green footprint, starting with using my car less, not using plastics, recycling and buying fewer things, especially clothes. In the future, my goal is to have a solar powered home and a garden where we can grow our own vegetables.
The other way to be the positivity and light you want to see in the world is learning to manage your emotional state. How do we wake up and be a ray of sunshine for our friends and loved ones? It can be difficult to always stay positive as our emotions and moods change from day to day. In my book “I Am Winning” I provide my readers with 8 actions steps to put into practice to be a winner, and one of the steps is: develop your EQ – Emotional Intelligence. This means learning how to acknowledge negative thought patterns and negative emotions and become aware of them, thereby dissolving them without much effort.
Here’s how you can put this into practice yourself daily. Let’s say you wake up in the morning with a sour mood, or you find your attitude change to negative after interacting with another person, or some situation makes you feel angry or anxious. The best method for overcoming these negative feelings and emotions is by becoming acutely conscious of them and observing that feeling or emotion closely without resisting it. What I do when any form of negativity arises is sit down, close my eyes and bring all my attention to that feeling. Without judging myself or assigning any thought to it, I simply sit and “feel” the feeling go through me. What usually happens after a few minutes of this observation is that the feeling starts to lose its power and hold on me.
In the words of my favorite author – Eckhart Tolle – who wrote such books as A New Earth and The Power of Now, “you cannot fight the darkness. As you shine the light on it, it will dissipate on its own. That light is your consciousness.” So be that awareness, that light, and observe your thoughts, emotions and feelings carefully to create more light and peace – within yourself – and outside of yourself.
Become the watcher, NOT the thinker. Become more AWARE. Make a habit to stay still and observant more often. Mediate daily, and be mindful as often as you can. That’s how you will be able to develop your emotional intelligence and with that become a more influential leader and role model in your community.
I believe it is so important for all of us to take responsibility for our emotional and mental states which are influenced by our thoughts.
Since we have a great ability to shape the world around us simply with our thoughts, we must be vigilant about what thoughts we allow into our head space. Be careful what you watch and read in the news and be selective what you allow to pop up on your social media newsfeed.
Finally, I want to leave you with one question to ponder as you embark on this exciting and important journey over the next 3 days. What kind of world do you want to create? It’s up to you, so be that change you wish to see in the world, starting with your own.