Three Things We Learnt From The Inner Development Goals Summit

Is the way we are trying to solve the problem the problem? This was one of the first questions posed at the Inner Development Goals Summit 23. Over the next 48 hours, our delegates went on to unpick this and so much more.

If you’re not familiar with the Inner Development Goals, they are a set of 23 skills for personal development that are broken into five areas; being, thinking, relating, collaborating and acting. All of the skills are linked back to achieving the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. We have partnered with Inner Development Goals to be part of the co-creation, development and growth of the inner human skills and qualities that are necessary to move us towards them. You can find out more here.

Here are our some of the teams highlights from the two days.

Megan Oakes: Inclusion is all for everyone, or not at all…

Caroline Casey, a disability activist who is fighting to reduce disability exclusion was a pivotal, emotionally raw and moving highlight of the IDG Summit. Caroline brought her whole self to the stage; vulnerability, raw emotions of grief and humility beamed from her as she spoke - all with a smile.

Immersing ourselves in collaboration requires us as individuals to get it wrong, to feel uncomfortable, to stand out, speak truthfully and showed us the importance of standing up for what you believe in. As individuals we yearn to contribute, to participate, to be seen and heard as our entirely unique selves, so we can collaborate as a collective, moving our inner growth to be outer change.

Caroline stated that the scale of the problems that face us today will not be resolved if we do not see our point of sadness, anger, and pain and use these as markers to change that to beauty, exploration, and action for change. By bringing her vulnerability to the stage, Caroline made us not only recognise this but feel it. It allowed us to be our entirely faulted selves, yet still magical.

At the end of her talk, Caroline told us that she couldn’t see us when asking us to participate in exercises, as she was registered blind. The work she contributes to, alongside 500 CEO’s helps to create inclusive businesses, which therefore creates inclusive societies and leaders. As a result, future generations will be coming into a world that is ready to work collaboratively on breaking down differences.

Immersing ourselves in collaboration requires us as individuals to get it wrong, to feel uncomfortable, to stand out, speak truthfully and showed us the importance of standing up for what you believe in.

Xander Munro: The power of MWe and collaboration

Watching along online gave me the opportunity to dip in and out of multiple talks across the two days. Amongst the inspirational speakers', one of the things that really stood out is to me is the idea of thinking beyond just us when it comes to development. From experience, when people think of the idea of personal development they usually think of the skills and personal growth they like to do for themselves, without the consideration of how it can benefit others.

Dan Siegel really brought this to life for me in his talk on the idea of combining the Me with the wider We. Or as he called it MWe (David, I think we can work on the name, call me!). By understanding our own identity and where it sits within the wider identity of the collective around us, we can start to pull together to achieve great things.

This isn’t just a great concept; I saw it play out in real life during some of the collaboration sessions in day two. Milva Ekonomi, Albinia’s Minister of State for Standards and Services gave a great example of this in action when she talked about how rural communities worked together with the government to secure funding to improve access to water. Individuals wanted to improve gender equality within rural communities and government wanted to improve access to water. By taking a collaborative approach they were able to find a solution that also empowered communities to better apply for future funding.

Kate Connell: Story telling that leads to change

Being able to get a clear understanding and insight in relation to the speakers’ individual experiences, created a curiosity that engaged the audience and encouraging others to share. Taking our inner feelings and beliefs can help shape a togetherness that can be shared to support and eliminate any form of toxicity within a workplace but more importantly in everyday life.

The inner Development Goals enables us as humans to look deeper into our own needs, values, and beliefs with a drive of positivity and reflection. We cannot change the past, but we can support, create and be part of the shaping of our future, our children’s and their children’s future and generations of children who are yet to come.

The framework of the IDG enables successful and a non-intrusive implementation of the overall goals. I could feel the excitement being felt throughout the conference when the design work of the 23 skills were being revealed. The unveiling was supported by a story, told through art, dance or music, that allowed you to open your mind and truly see the positive changes that can be made when we feel we are part of a great experience. These stories also highlighted how behaviour change can impact positively on yourself, those around you and potentially the rest of the world.

We must be curious about how we can develop our inner selves and allow for that to be shared via our outer selves. While at the Summit we got to choose a wooden shape with a design on it. At that time did not know what our design represented. As the Summit progressed, the designs on the shapes were revealed. One of the key attributes for me to be attracted to Circularity First when I applied for a job was the value of TRUST, and unbeknown to me at the time the shape that I chose was indeed TRUST.

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