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Think Small Pledge a Bust?

For a month now I’ve been urging people to take our Pledge to Think Small. And I’ve been asking supporters to spread the word and encourage others to take it. I’ve been stupefied by the response. A measly 177 pledgers so far. That is very disappointing. No one likes to admit defeat, and all my corporate spin experience over the years tells me not to be honest about this failure.

In order to be effective, however, I’ve got to be authentic and honest. So today I will lay my soul bare and admit – at least so far – that the Pledge to Think Small is a big bust. I’m not giving up. I still think it’s a good idea. But I’m open to learning from my mistakes.

Please comment below and let me know where you think I went wrong. Was it a bad slogan? Too clever for its own good? Does the pledge ask for too big a commitment (even though the global emergency demands dramatic action)? Is it too long? Too thorough? Too incomplete? Or is the world SO not ready for this kind of thinking that it’s unrealistic to expect 10,000 pledges worldwide?

I thought with over 1,000 copies of GrowthBusters sold, over 1,000 subscribers to my email updates, and over 1,000 facebook fans, we should at least get 1,000 signatures to the pledge. Where did we go wrong?

On the plus side, GrowthBusters screenings are at an all-time high. This week alone we have screenings at Occupy Nattick, Colorado State University, the Soho International Film Festival, the Cosmic Cine Filmfestival in Germany, the Urban Nomads Filmfest in Taipei and the Indie Spirit Film Festival in Colorado Springs. I hope these will inspire more people to embrace the kinds of changes recommended by the Pledge. Let me know how you think we can do better!

LTG-Experiment_day14-300x212 Day 14 of our Exponential Growth demonstration. Each day we double the grains of wheat in our beaker (just under 3% hourly growth rate to get a 24-hour doubling time). Today we double the 4,096 grains. Remember, we began with just one grain wheat only 14 days ago:

Dave Gardner
Filmmaker

Dave Gardner is the director of the new documentary, GrowthBusters: Hooked on Growth, which uncovers the cultural forces that keep us pursuing growth in the face of overwhelming evidence we’ve outgrown the planet.

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Comments (0)

  • Avatar

    Hardassi

    |

    I few thoughts.
    Perhaps the term ‘small’ doesn’t resonate in a positive manner in the current North American society.
    I normally discuss this in the context of “happiness is wanting what you [already] have, not having what you want [more].”
    Then I talk about donating all the stuff I don’t use, re-use, etc. That resonates with some, but it is a conversation, not a catch -phrase.
    We know that ‘More’ won’t make you happier. Many people don’t think ‘small’ will make you happier either. People who aren’t satisfied with what they have won’t be happy to learn that the solution lies within them, not with getting ‘more.’
    A few thoughts, but no easy answers. As Luria famously said “there’s a simple answer to every complex question. And it is wrong.” This is a complex issue.

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Malcolm

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    Between small and large
    there is a path;
    give large, small world,
    think deep, live intensely.
    Size is complex;
    Begin simply, love hugely,
    find where to trust.

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Dave Gardner

    |

    Thanks for these comments. In today’s world, it seems to me we need some very good branding to slice through all the noise. I still think that “Think Small” has what it takes, but it does appear I’m being proven wrong at the moment.

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Dennis

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    Maybe add a catchy phrase by a retitle – perhaps: “It’s Big Idea to Think Small Pledge”

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Dennis

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    “It’s a Big Idea to Think Small”

    best wishes Mr. Gardner

    Reply

  • Avatar

    Ruth

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    Thanks Dennis! Maybe you CAN quit your day job! 🙂

    Reply

    • Avatar

      K

      |

      Maybe consider:
      “Pledge to LIVE small”

      Reply

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