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(0:00-3:10 Show Introduction)
Lauren Kress 03:11
G’day, everyone. Lauren Kress, the business scientist here and joining me this afternoon is Ken Zulumovski. Ken, I'm just going to get you to start off by introducing a little bit about yourself and what you do.
Ken Zulumovski 03:26
Hi Lauren, and thanks for inviting me to your show. It's good to be back.
Lauren Kress 03:30
It's good to be chatting, yeah and good to see your face this time.
Ken Zulumovski 03:36
What do I do? I'm a consultant. I have a business. I do some lecturing. I do some program development. I do some coaching and some cultural supervision. I'm involved in the Australian Defence Force as well. In and around that recruitment, career development strategy stuff, I started off my career as a health worker working in Aboriginal communities in the frontline, social work, style work. Then I went on to do a bit of research and a bit of program development delivery. Then established a couple of organisations. Now I'm a bit of a specialist in some fields.
Lauren Kress 04:17
I feel like you're being very humble. You have an honorary doctorate from Sydney University, which is one of the highest awards you can obtain from a university, which is pretty incredible. You have done and continue to do some amazing work in the community. Can you tell us a little bit about—I'm just going to say it for you, because I'm going to talk you up a little bit here, Ken. I feel like you're being too shy, but you've been doing this 7 Days of COURAGE series on LinkedIn. Can you tell us a little bit about what that is? I know "courage" stands for something. Can you sort of talk us through that a little bit?
Ken Zulumovski 04:59
Well, 7 Days of COURAGE. Look, there are two things that are going on right now for me. One is the realisation that I'm going through a massive adjustment in life, in a social and emotional well-being sense. Obviously, the social isolation stuff, not being able to see parents and friends, and not being able to travel is a big thing. My business and my work have always been around community. Community engagement, community consultation, community involvement, community development, community empowerment. What do I do as a person whose natural environment, whose natural place is in the community? With people, running groups, living programs in schools, Justice Centres, universities, wherever. What do you do when all of a sudden I'm confined to an apartment in Sydney?
Ken Zulumovski 05:57
It came from the realisation that I'm definitely not alone in this and that with this massive adjustment— My career has been in mental health. I understand a bit of the psychology of adjustment and how difficult it is sometimes to change with flexibility. I'm very empathetic with the community. I'm hearing things like alcohol consumption has increased by up to 30% in the last few weeks. I'm hearing things like there's potentially an increase in family violence in homes, because of this environment. Because of the extra stressors.
Ken Zulumovski 06:35
Like anyone with a general social concern, I want to see people come through this transition. I want to see people learn from it, develop, evolve. I want to see families make the most of this opportunity to spend time together. With the kids at home, homeschooling. I want to see people evolving out of the crisis. What I'm really excited about is this idea of—because we've all now been forced to sit with ourselves, sit at home, sit with ourselves and disengage a little bit from the mainstream, I'm really excited about the potential for growth and change for everyone.
Ken Zulumovski 07:23
Swiss psychologist, Carl Jung, talked about the idea of developing insight through studying yourself and understanding yourself and knowing yourself. You can't do that. It's very difficult to do that when you're running the hamster wheel. When you are in the mainstream you're subject to trends and fashion and social norms. Where do you ever really get the opportunity to be yourself, to self-actualise, to really enjoy the things that you really love to do? We're often doing things for our boss or for our partners or for our peers. When do you ever get the chance to sit back and reflect and actually discover who you really are? It hardly ever happens in today's modern culture.
Ken Zulumovski 08:11
Everybody's like, Fight Club, cult classic. It's a movie about Tyler Durden, who creates himself an alter ego so he can be himself so he can do what he really wants to do so that he can break free from his buttoned-down, Oxford cloth, corporate environment and be this kind of rebel that does what he wants, thinks how he wants. He doesn't have to please anyone, lives for himself. A lot of us struggle with the fact that we're living for someone else, our decision's being made in consideration for somebody else, and so we never really get to self-actualise or be our true self.
Ken Zulumovski 08:46
Another friend said, "When I stopped worrying about what other people thought of me, everything changed." In this environment, we get an opportunity to see that ourselves, to explore this notion of the shadow. The good parts of our self and also the villain aspect of ourselves. The deceptive, the conniving, the evil part of ourselves, that villain. Because we've all got a bit of that. None of us are saints. We get to understand that and if we get to spend more time with ourselves and learn to know it, get to know ourselves, we can grow. We can master all of the sides of ourselves. We become our true selves. I think that's an exciting opportunity for everyone in this environment. I think we're going to see creativity, innovation out of discretion. It's like there's a whole bunch of ashes, piles of ashes out there. We're going to see phoenixes rising from those ashes in numbers. It's going to eclipse the sun. It's going to be incredible.
Lauren Kress 10:11
I completely agree with you. I've been going through all these different mental stages in my head. I started off—and I've been hesitant to say this too much because I know that so many people are struggling right now and I don't want to be seen as someone who's just forever optimistic and just glossing over people's pain and anguish and all those kinds of things, but at the same time, as someone who really loves to experiment, and look for opportunities.
Ken Zulumovski 10:47
It's a great chance for it.
Lauren Kress 10:47
Yeah, exactly. I'm like, could this be something that, actually on the other side, humanity's better off? I've started talking to quite a few experts, like yourself as well, who are saying, "Yeah, there are opportunities to grow, personally, professionally, in the way that we relate with ourselves and our families." It's kind of just this—I don't know there's this mix of emotions that feels almost like the seven stages of grief, or something like that.
Lauren Kress 11:32
I think regardless of what happens, I don't think that we will end up—people are talking about like, "This will end," but I don't think we'll be able to go back to where we were before this incident. What're your thoughts on that?
Ken Zulumovski 11:47
That's a wonderful concept, really. Because to me, it speaks to growth and change. When we have a crisis I love the Eastern philosophical ways of looking at crisis, because they actually embrace crisis, they rejoice it. They're enthusiastic about it because they know that through crisis, there's growth and there is change.
Ken Zulumovski 12:16
In our ordinary environment when everything is going okay, we don't get opportunities to really see what we're made of: what talents, what creativity we have, what hidden talents, what potential that we have. We don't really get to see it until you are forced to put yourself outside your comfort zone. Most of us, a lot of us, will stay in our comfort zone until we're really, really pushed to move out of it. I think like you, it's incredibly exciting this time, just to see people actually forced to grow and evolve. To come through it. The other thing is that we don't get an opportunity to practice our virtues, our principles. I like to study philosophies. They're based on four virtues of courage, justice, temperance and... it'll come to me.
Ken Zulumovski 13:28
Unless we're tested, unless we have a little bit of friction in our lives, you didn't get to see what people are made of. Right now, under the situation, you're going to see what the community is made of: individuals, governments, our leaders. We're looking to them to see what they got. It's a really good opportunity right now to test the character. To bring out our best character.
Lauren Kress 13:57
Sorry, I got excited when you said—what you were saying about it bringing out new things in people. Because I was actually thinking about—I don't want to go too into politics. I try to steer away from politics on the show, but I've been thinking about the leaders in Australia and the really difficult work and decisions they've had to make over the past few weeks. I was like, I just feel like some of the things that have happened and the progress that has been made in a relatively short period of time is really actually quite phenomenal. I'm not saying I'm a fan of the government as a whole right now, you know what I mean? But I don't think governing Australia right now would be an easy thing to do. I guess I kind of tip my hat to them. To see the drop in how many cases people are getting in terms of coronavirus each day. How Australia is performing in relation to the rest of the world, in terms of that. I don't know. What're your thoughts without getting too into the politics?
Ken Zulumovski 15:13
Yeah. Somebody posted something the other day and said, "Isn't it amazing how fast we can find resources when we really need to?"
Ken Zulumovski 15:20
For me, there are elements of leadership that are questionable in today's politics. The fact that the attention or resources are not going where they may need to go, to make real change for those who might need it. It just speaks really to the nation's values and just the leadership, I guess at the moment. I'm speaking to spaces of disadvantage, like maybe indigenous spaces. You've still got people living without running water and access to education and healthcare in a First World country, one of the wealthiest countries in the world. These situations could be fixed quite easily with some good direction and leadership and resources.
Ken Zulumovski 16:36
But it doesn't happen. It's like, you remember when the Notre Dame church caught on fire? All of a sudden, all these hundreds of millions of dollars were pouring from all over the world to try and rebuild this church. People were saying, "Well, what about this crisis and this crisis and this crisis?" It's a bit of a reality of where our values are. But again, it highlights an opportunity. It highlights a lot of opportunities there for new leadership and new ideas to start moving through.
Ken Zulumovski 17:13
I think another thing that's come out of this whole corona thing is that we've had a little bit of forced humility. We've been living in a time of abundance and luxury and excess and there are generations that have never known a recession; personal debts at an all-time high, just the culture of spending and consumerism. All of a sudden, thousands of people are now losing their jobs. Aspirations of maybe owning a home or getting a new car or something material have been dramatically reduced down to just being able to pay your rent or pay for your child's healthcare. So there's a kind of forced humility that is going on right now for people and I think it's realigning our perspective on certain things.
Ken Zulumovski 17:56
Like a friend of mine was talking the other day. She's got a small business and she's feeling the hit. She says, "You know what, Ken? I'm actually feeling really grateful right now. Because I've actually had time to stop and realize what I've got." She says, "You know what, Ken? I've got running water and I've got electricity." She says, "Isn't that amazing? Running water is actually amazing." I thought, "Yeah, it is. It's actually incredible." Because there are some people that don't have running water. Right? We can order groceries to our door if we need to. We can still go to the doctor. We have free healthcare. We have food, we have security. Our country's not at war. Nobody's going to bulldoze your house tomorrow. There's not civil unrest on the streets. I like the idea of forced humility because it's kind of a leveller. It's levelling everybody. It's kind of like hitting the reset button, pressed on ourselves. I guess it's a good opportunity just to be reminded of what's important.
Lauren Kress 19:56
I think that's such a really beautiful point, actually, because I've been thinking about this as well. I actually had a similar thing to your friend where I was like, "My husband's a doctor. He has a very, very secure job.” Yes, at the same time I am concerned that he is on the front line of healthcare works and emergency. But we have security in our household. And yeah, my business took a bit of a hit, but in the scheme of things, I know, other businesses that have just overnight, they have nothing.
Lauren Kress 20:37
When you said that thing about level, I think there's this call for an attitude adjustment of going, "Hang on, a lot of this stuff can just be taken away from us." I think there are people who have judged people who are in disadvantaged groups in the past. I think now it's like, "Hang on a second. Can you really judge people? Because we're all kind of in that situation a little bit more now and it was completely out of our control." I think realizing the lack of control that we have is so important for being able to empathize with other groups and understanding what maybe they've been going through their entire life. But can you talk us through what each element of COURAGE is? Just explain that a little bit, that framework.
Ken Zulumovski 21:29
Yeah. Well, the COURAGE model came about through alignment with Western therapeutic models in mental health, and Western traditions and indigenous mental health practices. Then I added elements of military leadership to it from my years in the military, in the army. I like the word "courage." Because I don't know if you know, the word "courage" is actually a French word. It has a French origin. It means, "of the heart." In the Stoic philosophies, they say that courage is the virtue to which all other virtues descend. Without courage, we don't have anything, we can't even make a decision.
Ken Zulumovski 22:24
We built the model around this idea of the necessity to have courage in order to progress or to move in life. "COURAGE" stands for culture, optimism, understanding, relationships, acceptance, gratitude, and encouragement. Each of those elements is a guide for negotiating the challenges that all of us will face or have already faced in our lives or will continue to face in our lives. For example, culture, it's really important to have, in particular cultural safety. It's really important to have a culture that's safe, that values you, that's not a threat to your identity or your way of life or your values or your practices or beliefs. That also extends to the family environment, the household environment, the work environment, the community environment, the culture that you live in will dictate what your potential could be. And, to a degree, what your values and what your beliefs will be, what your behaviours then will be.
Ken Zulumovski 23:42
Optimism, it's really important. Everyone knows that we have to have positive thinking. But in the model, it's about not just positive thinking, but it's about critical thinking. It's about really questioning yourself and just living in a constant state of reflective practice. Every day you wake up and you ask yourself, "Do my actions match my values? Is this really working for me?" If it's not, then you have an opportunity to make some change. But you have to be optimistic that change will bring you what you need to have in your life. If you're not optimistic about it, it's hard to attempt to make change.
Ken Zulumovski 24:40
Then you have understanding. Understanding is about—it's really about listening. It's about deep listening. It's about empathy: putting yourself in the other person's shoes. It's about trying to see the bigger picture. Then it puts you in a better position to be able to communicate. To be able to express what your needs are, to be able to hear other people's needs. If we don't understand each other or if we don't understand our environment, it's very difficult for us to progress in it. It's difficult for us to understand where we fit in the environment, in the world, in the home. What's my role? What's my potential in the world? What's my relationship to the world? It just helps break that small-minded kind of mentality, helps you to think big, think big picture. Just expand your horizons.
Ken Zulumovski 25:50
What's the next one? Relationships, my favourite one. Don't ask me why.
Lauren Kress 26:01
Ken Zulumovski 26:04
Relationships. I love relationships and I love the sweet element of relationships. I love all my relationships as well. Relationships is a really good one. Because relationships are tough. Relationships with your partner, with your family, with your mom and dad, your carers, relationship with your boss. There's always a power dynamic and there's always human nature, gets in the way. Relationships can be really deadly, life-threatening. It can be toxic. I saw another post that said, "Suicide still kills more people in Australia than COVID-19, more people every day." There's like 40 something people a day, die from suicide in Australia. That's like over 3000 a year. How many actually attempt and are not successful? It might be 10 times that number.
Ken Zulumovski 27:07
There's a real sickness in our society. A lot of it's because of relationships. If you're in a loving environment, where your self-worth is reflected back to you, by your peers and by your partners, and you're respected, and you're considered, then you will feel good about yourself. You won't want to commit suicide. If you're in a toxic environment, where you're not considered, your views are not mattered, your voice is not heard, and the toxic abusive relationships, then you're going to develop some mental health issues. You're going to get depressed. You're going to be isolated. You're not going to see any value in life and you're going to want to opt-out.
Ken Zulumovski 27:55
That's why relationships are my favourite because we can give people, even through the work that we do here, through the work you do and my work, we can connect to people. We can validate people. We can listen to them. We can make them feel worthy. We can give them hope. We can encourage them to set their goals and move their lives on. We can change lives, like that. That's why relationship's my favourite. I like it because it's real. It's where the honesty is at. You get to hear people's real problems, real challenges, real vulnerabilities.
Ken Zulumovski 28:41
There's another Stoic quote someone said, "The most courageous thing in life is the sight of a person going through adversity." Right? In my work, I get to see people struggling with adversity, challenging their adversity, challenging their shadow, facing their demons. That, to me, is the most incredible thing to see, a lot. It gives you humility as well. It's a great leveller. Your sense of self-worth is reflected back to you by those around you. So keep good company. That's my tip for today.
Ken Zulumovski 29:33
Acceptance. What do we get for acceptance? Acceptance comes from acceptance and commitment therapy or ACT, from the third wave of psychology. It's grounded in compassionate action. The fundamental question that the therapy, that ACT asks of us is, what do you value and what are you prepared to do about it? That's what we encourage people to ask themselves every day, particularly in hard times. What do you value? What are you prepared to do about it? Because when you ask what do you value? Then your priorities all of a sudden, are aligned for you. You don't have to do the hard work. You don't have to write a list of your priorities. If you're asking yourself, "What do I value?" Then the important things come to mind. Then you say, "What am I prepared to do about it?" Well, that's when your life changes. Because you start living in accordance with your values. Your actions start to demonstrate your values. Your actions speak for who you are. People don't remember you for your words, they remember you for your actions. You become your true self and people will respect you for that. And more importantly, you respect yourself much better.
Ken Zulumovski 31:01
Yeah, so that's acceptance. What's the next one, gratitude? Gratitude's a little bit kind of cliché. "Be grateful. Yeah, be grateful, be grateful, be grateful." It's all kind of relative. If I'm sitting in a $50 million house in Vaucluse and I'm looking out my floor to ceiling window view of the Harbour Bridge, and I get a phone call and my million dollar contract just got cancelled. Now, I'm going to feel bad about that. I might have an argument with my wife about that. And she might just say, "Be grateful for what you got," and you might go, "Oh, well." It might be hard to be grateful when you're so caught up in the rat race and in the pursuit of financial freedom, material goals. In that sense, gratitude sometimes, it gets a bit disrespected.
Ken Zulumovski 32:04
In gratitude, most people are not really interested in what I've got right now or what's secure, I'm more focused on what I don't have, but if we can shift our minds to what we do have, and writing your gratitude is just an amazing way of doing that. It's an amazing way of diminishing any sort of sense of loss that you might be feeling right now. If you'd grab a pad and pen and start writing a list of the top 10 things that you're grateful for right now. All of a sudden, you kind of feel— well you feel a little bit of humility, don't you? Because you might be grateful for your health.
Ken Zulumovski 32:54
I had a phone call this morning, someone's child got diagnosed with leukaemia. So I think about that. If I turn on the news today, someone's probably died on the highway today. Or I'll hear about somebody else losing their job. Or something else is happening around the world. If I can write a gratitude list, immediately what comes up is I've got my health, I've got opportunity, I've got loved ones, I've got food in the fridge. Tomorrow is going to be okay. All of a sudden, I'm feeling grounded. All of a sudden, I'm kind of rich. I realize that what I've actually got is all that I really need right now. And it gets me out of that mindset of wanting more. They say the poorest person is not the person who has the least, but the person who wants more. That's a poor person in reality.
Ken Zulumovski 34:01
Gratitude is about really just appreciating what you have and backing yourself. Just understanding that no one's got it all sorted out. If I asked you how's your relationship with your doctor husband? How's your financial...? How's your health? How's your family? If I asked you about love, finances, health and family or career. You're going to say, "Oh, one's really good. The other one's not so good. This one's kind of average and this one I'm working on or I've just started or I haven't even started it yet." It reminds us that not everybody—nobody has it all worked out. Nobody's perfect. Perfection is a fantasy. It's just a single moment and it never lasts more than a moment. You can give yourself a break because you're just like everybody else.
Lauren Kress 35:12
It kind of also goes back to your point about self-actualization as well, right? Because Maslow's hierarchy of needs has been coming up in a lot of conversations during this crisis. People are feeling like a lot of their basic needs are no longer met. I was looking at the—there was a bunch of adaptations later on to Maslow's hierarchy of needs. The first of four levels, basically, before self-actualization is all about, "I need more, I need more. There's not enough, I need more." But actually, in the self-actualization realm, it's just giving me more purpose. I want to learn more, but it's not that I need more. Which is a complete mindset shift, like you said. Right?
Ken Zulumovski 36:01
Yeah, it is. Food and shelter are essential for our physical bodies. But the rest of it: love, sense of belonging and community is important as well. But many heroes have been born out of environments where they didn't have love, they didn't have community, they didn't have family. But for the most part, those are essential elements for the human faculties to develop and for people to thrive. Maslow's hierarchy is a really good recipe for social-emotional well-being for just the bare essentials really in life: food, shelter, community, place of belonging, purpose. Then yeah, you don't really need much else after that, if you choose. The rest is your choice. If you want to go for more material possessions, or you want to go for relationships, or you want to aspire to success in your careers. The rest is up to you. But it's not essential for communities to experience joy in life.
Lauren Kress 37:30
We're on the last letter. We're on "E." I don't want to forget about "E", so what's "E"?
Ken Zulumovski 37:39
Lauren Kress 37:39
Encouragement. Okay, cool. Yup. So, so important, right?
Ken Zulumovski 37:47
Yeah, it really is. It's really about encouraging ourselves. It's having a really good relationship with yourself. Backing yourself and being courageous I guess to put your foot outside your comfort zone. Encouraging the kids. It's about peer-to-peer support. It's about real community. Unfortunately, in some elements of our society, there's a study in an American university about narcissism. Narcissism is at an all-time high. Unfortunately, an environment where we are praised for, or valued for how much better we are than the next person is a really dangerous environment, because, in order to be good and successful and worthy, you have to be better than everybody else. That kind of environment sets up for and against—it sets up a narcissistic environment where people are just in it for themselves, on a level.
Ken Zulumovski 39:22
Encouragement is about encouraging each other. It's about lifting each other. It's about sharing the victories. It's about teamwork. It's about a healthy work environment and healthy peer-to-peer support. Not a toxic environment where it's every man for himself or it's a cutthroat dog-eat-dog environment. It goes along the lines of that cultural safety and cultural diversity and diversity and inclusion. It's the principles that underlie those kinds of movements. Is it ethos? The emotion, the feeling the value, or is it pathos? I think it's pathos. They're going to hear me talking about stuff I don't know about.
Lauren Kress 40:26
Ethos, pathos. Does anyone know? I was thinking as well and we'll have to finish up soon. But I was thinking just with that last point that you're making around encouragement and that sort of dog-eat-dog thing; I put this post out the other day saying, "I've seen, I feel like this crisis we've seen some of the best and worst of people." Like you see people who are just going to supermarkets and hoarding things or re-selling them for like 10 times the price. Then I've seen people do some really amazing things like offering services for free, offering support for free. Or just collaborating, working out how they can do something new together.
Lauren Kress 41:14
I also understand why people are responding in a way that is that dog-eat-dog way because I think if you've been treated—because like for me, we ran out of toilet paper weeks ago, right? Because we'd never stocked up, but I knew. I was like, "Oh, I'll just be able to ask people." I have friends who—and that's what's happened. We've ended up being fine because we have the relationships around us that mean that we're never going to go without. We have that security there. But if you don't have that security, I can really understand why people feel like they're sort of in this fight or flight response, where it's like, "I just have to take care of myself, because no one else will." I think it's just been interesting to see that like there are people who've gotten more competitive in business. Because it's like, "Well, I've got to look after my business." Gotten more competitive just in their interactions in the shopping centre. Then on the other side, these sort of collaborative givers, who were kind of like, "Well, how do we all help each other out?"
Lauren Kress 42:25
What would you say in relation to—I'm going to turn this into a question because I just went on a rant. What would you say, in relation to that? Do you agree with me? Have you seen the same kind of thing where there are people going in these two directions? You know what I mean?
Ken Zulumovski 42:44
Look, I'll give you an indigenous perspective. I haven't seen that in indigenous communities. Because there's a culture of sharing and a culture of looking out for each other. In other cultures where you have a lot of fear. There's a lot of fear in the mainstream culture, people turn the six o'clock news and somebody's getting stabbed, someone's getting raped, someone's getting kidnapped or there's a war going on and so it's horrible stuff. Fear sells products. Fear sells things. Fear is a very powerful element for social control. But at times like these, it really backfires.
Ken Zulumovski 43:31
But in saying that, the level of behaviour that we've had in our country has not been anything overly dramatic or anything overly outrageous, or disgusting, really. I think even the worst of what we've seen has been low-level conflict. I think, by and large, communities bound together and people have spoken up about irresponsible behaviour and people not considering other people, disrespect and whatever.
Ken Zulumovski 44:22
But that's just people responding to fear. It's kind of natural. People are afraid and don't know what's going to happen. None of us has experienced this kind of thing in our lives either. So who knows? I don't understand the thing with the toilet paper, though. I really don't get what people do with all this toilet paper. Why would they need 30 or 40 rolls of toilet paper? A roll of toilet paper should last you like a week, maybe two, just one roll. Shouldn't it? What do you do with it?
Lauren Kress 44:56
Probably for men as well, it does. I don't want a side to it having toilet talk on the show. But maybe it lasts a little bit longer for men. But I did ask someone about it. I asked one of our friends, who's a doctor, as well. He said apparently, there was actually some research done around this. When people feel like they don't have control, the idea of not having control over their hygiene is a real issue. Because we've seen the same kind of thing with sanitizers and things like that. It's like this, "I don't have control, but I still have toilet paper." It's pretty bizarre, though, isn't it? Like who would have thought? Who would have picked that one?
Ken Zulumovski 45:44
Yeah. It's really strange. I hope that this thing forces people to ration all of their household goods and learn to be a little bit more conservative. You know that campaign? Reduce, reuse, recycle. I hope it forces people to be more conservative. Or spend less money on it. Companies that make it won't appreciate this at all. But spend less money on it, save more money, they'll make things last and they'll live a little bit more conservatively. For me, this is kind of how I live all the time. Like a tube of toothpaste would last me like three months. Shampoo will last me six months. I just use every last drop. That's a bit old fashioned. It's not very popular with my friends.
Ken Zulumovski 46:09
But I just think that we're a little bit blasé with our resources. It's like we're never going to run out. Well, hello? Look what's happening. Your bank account can run out one day and your household can run out. I just hope that for the good of everyone, everyone can just be a little bit more sensible with their budgets and their consumption. Because it all has an impact on our environment. And that affects all of us. A lot of people are also saying the environment's healing itself right now because there's less carbon emission, there's less waste, less consumption of everything.
Lauren Kress 47:29
I heard it put really nicely by Florence Blackaway, who I interviewed a couple of weeks ago, I don't know it's all a bit of a blur. But one of the things he said is like, "Nature's catching a breath." We're seeing from the satellite images that there's less smog around industrial areas. I'm really curious about what happens. I definitely want to talk about this more on the show. I'm trying to source guests at the moment. To talk about from a client science perspective, how do we use this? I feel like this is a bit of a fork in the road moment for humanity. We've been going down this path that is like you said, it's not sustainable. We can't just have, "More, more, more, more, more," forever.
Ken Zulumovski 48:18
It's like racing through a red light.
Lauren Kress 48:21
Sorry, say that again.
Ken Zulumovski 48:25
It's like racing through a red light.
Lauren Kress 48:32
Yeah. Now, it's like, hang on. You mentioned opportunity at the beginning of our chat. We either go back to the way we were, or maybe this is a false dichotomy, but if we do choose to live more consciously and conservatively and use this as a bit of a lesson, maybe this is the thing that kind of saves humanity long-term. I don't know, maybe that's super optimistic, but I'm an optimist.
Ken Zulumovski 48:59
Yeah, well, we sincerely hope that we've learned some lessons from this crisis. It just reminds us that we're not all invincible and that our current systems that we rely on so much prove to not work, like our economy, for example. In this kind of economical model, if all it takes is a virus to disrupt the entire globe's functioning and economies, people losing jobs and then losing their homes or whatever, not being able to buy things that they need, then that's not the right system, is it? It's not the best system for us. There're big philosophical questions there. I'm just really not an expert at that stuff.
Ken Zulumovski 49:52
But what I did thinking of 7 Days of COURAGE was, it was about, what can we do? What can we give the world right now? What have we got to share that won't cost anything, that might help someone make a decision that has a massive impact on the life of others? I came up with the idea of the seven letters in the word "courage." I thought 7 Days of COURAGE, each day is an element of courage. We post a video on YouTube and LinkedIn and Facebook, and we just offered it out there for people to consider and maybe to learn more about it. Also, it's fundamental to our staff training and development as well, for our programs and services. It's used for community consultation and cultural supervision, staff training and development. It's a really sound model for peer-to-peer support and community development.
Lauren Kress 50:56
Got a little bit over time, but it's been fascinating speaking with you, Ken. Lovely to talk to you again and like I said before, to see your face this time while we're having our interview. Thanks so much for your time. Keep doing what you're doing. I love your work. I'm sure we'll chat again soon.
Ken Zulumovski 51:14
You're very, very welcome, Lauren. Thank you so much. It's been wonderful to connect with you again and have the conversation and more importantly, I hope that it's useful for the listeners out there. Welcome any feedback, comments, posts, contact, reach out. You're doing good work too. Keep it up.
Lauren Kress 51:38
Well...Yeah, pretty much. Alright, see you, Ken.
Ken Zulumovski 51:46
Lauren Kress 51:47