Be The Change

Exactly at what point do we transition from feeling sorry about a problem and become a part of the solution?

This was running through my mind after having participated in a business meeting that contributed about 300 plastic bottles to our environment. This number is but a drop in the overall 100 million bottles that we thrash globally every single day. It’s appalling, to say the least!

Usually, I would feel bad about an incident like this, crib about it to family / friends & forget about it in a few days. This time it was different.

Soon after, I identified a series of events that generate a similar number of plastic bottles every month into the environment. I suggested to my colleagues that we ought to stop this & switch to a better alternative. Most of them supported it whole heartedly. And thus, we have collectively initiated a change.. a change for the better.

Why did I deviate from my usual routine to do what I did. A big part can be attributed to a social media post similar to this by someone I admire. That post was on top of my mind & when an opportunity cropped up, I took action.

Hence this post. In the hope that it will inspire & prompt some more action. It’s a complex issue & needs a lot more of us to be a part of the solution.

DID YOU KNOW

  1. It takes at least 450 years (& up to 1,000 yes) for a single serve plastic bottle to decompose
  2. A million plastic bottles are bought around the world every minute – which breaks down to 20,000 plastic bottles a second
  3. Less than 6% of bottles are recycled globally
  4. Bottled water can cost 10,000 times more than tap water to manufacture
  5. Making a plastic bottle uses 2-3 times as much water as fits inside the bottle
  6. Research has found that 93 per cent of bottled water brands tested contained some sort of microplastic.

Deliberate Practice: 2 Finger Clutching

When I started riding a motorbike (my first ever) two years ago, I got into the habit of using four fingers to operate the clutch. It was probably because of the belief that I had to press the lever fully for proper gear changing.. like in a car. Doing so has become a part of my muscle memory now.

Over the last few months, I’ve been trying to pick some off roading skills. And I’ve discovered that using 2 or 3 fingers for clutch control is a game changer. Since then I’ve tried to clutch with fewer fingers.. but never succeeded. Until today.

Clutching with 2 fingers offers multiple benefits.

  • optimize energy used & resources (fingers)
  • the freed fingers can be used to maintain control on the handlebar
  • .. & use the horn

But, it wasn’t to be. I was scared of crushing my fingers between the handlebar & the gear lever. I always thought four fingers are a must to declutch properly. I didn’t want to risk trying a new skill… it felt weird. My hand – foot coordination was severely compromised whenever I tried it.

Today’s morning ride was dedicated to the deliberate practice of two fingered clutch. It was a conscious & focused practice of this method. It was dedicated to getting over the feeling of uncomfort.. or getting used to the feeling till it became normal. It was an attempt to force the muscles to not depend on its memory.

Upshifting was relatively easy, downshifting not so. The hand – leg coordination just wasn’t working. It took a lot of conscious effort. Discomfort zone.

But, a start was made. And I’m definitely on my way to developing the two finger clutching skill.

Disclaimer: I’m a biking & off roading noob. Sharing my experiences, is an attempt to solidify my learning.