Why the term “Conscious” Travel?

This movement is based on a conviction that the growth of mass tourism is now out of control. Like capitalism, oil production, resource exploitation, or the exploding population of any species unchecked by predators, tourism growth has passed a tipping point when its positive effects are being replaced by ever increasing costs to a wider community. We are not disputing or decrying the enormous wealth that has been created over the past century but we must also wake up to the fact that nothing in nature grows indefinitely. Even cancer cells cannot outlive the hosts on which they feed.

Thus the real task at hand is one of “waking up”.  It’s as if we’re in a trance. Like addicts or patients with a terminal illness many of us refuse to accept that our old ways of thinking and perceiving are ceasing to make effective sense of the world we live in.

Hence our choice of the word “conscious” which, according to the dictionary, means to:

  • be aware of one’s own existence, sensations, thoughts, surroundings, etc.
  • be fully aware of or sensitive to something;
  • to have one’s mental faculties and senses fully active;
  • know oneself and be aware of what one is doing; thinking and feeling as in to be self-conscious;
  • act with deliberate intent; and
  • be acutely aware of, or concerned about, something specific such as being health conscious or diet-conscious.

All of these definitions imply a state of alertness; of being awake; or acting deliberately, and to borrow from the Bhuddhist tradition – to be mindful – all states of being that are the essential pre-conditions for acting responsibly. For how can one assume responsibility for one’s actions, if one is sleep walking or in a trance?

These “waking up” times are associated with enormous turmoil, bewilderment, hesitancy and confusion as conventional beliefs and assumptions prove to be less effective at making sense of the world. Such transition periods have occurred several times before in history and, every time they have occurred, the shift from one mode of perception (or mindset) to another has also unleashed a period of intense wealth creation, discovery and technological innovation. Examples include the emergence of language, science, and the industrial revolution.

To become “conscious” in business is to become aware of:

  • what you value
  • the hidden assumptions that underpin what you value and how your respond to events
  • how your business affects others
  • how your business is affected by external factors, events, change drivers etc.
  • your sense of purpose; what motivates you and provides fulfilment
  • the mindsets of others
  • your strengths and weaknesses as a leader.
%d bloggers like this: