Being Possitopian means both facing the worst and imagining the best, in ways that are both much more rational and critical, and much more creative and open-minded. And also, it means anticipating the future much more frequently, in many more situations and permutations, involving a greater diversity of people. Managing the risks of the planetary emergency is not about working out the best response to the most likely outcome, it is about determining the best response to the full distribution of possible outcomes.
Being Possitopian isn’t a halfway position between glass half-empty and half-full. It is a greatly expanded perspective, a mind that is much more open to ecological realities beyond the human, to diverse perspectives and future possibilities.
Can you apply Possitopian thinking to a planning meeting? You might be thinking ahead one year, so push it out to 5 or 10 years. You might be assuming that certain conditions are going to continue but challenge those assumptions. You might be ignoring the rapid onset of the planetary emergency, so factor in some of the possible impacts into your planning. You might be missing out on possible options because you’re not drawing on diverse perspectives to open up your imagination of the future – so can you bring some imagination into your meeting? Give at least 30 minutes to this new approach. Draw rather than writing down your ideas. Try to use the same thinking regularly and get more practiced at it.