Effort Less is a Wrap

Miss the previous update about Effort Less? Read it here.

I really don't know how it happened.

How a pretty simple idea, without much of a plan, to share about my field work of the past couple of years with anybody interested upon my return to the US, turned into a small tour of 17 cities in 2 different countries (US & UK).

In total, I addressed about 450 people, as well as 250 elementary and high school age kids. The time with the kids was especially memorable, and totally unexpected.

It was interesting. Initially, the talks focused on the various projects in India and Africa, with some explanation of the mechanics of how I go about approaching communities, sustainability, etc.

After awhile though, they evolved into the more relevant and personal themes behind the work—concepts like committing to your path, following your bliss, and fearlessness.

Going with the Flow

The tour was made entirely possible by the generosity of others. Had it been conducted in a traditional manner, with taxi services, hotels, meals out, etc., I couldn't have afforded it nor would I have wanted to do it this way anyway.

What happened was a group of about a dozen or so hosts came in contact with either my work or writing, felt some inspiration, and invited me to come to their city offering airport pick up, a room in their home, meals, as well as a group to talk to.

I said yes, just about, to everybody's invitations, even in the cases where the host was not convinced a crowd would form to make it worthwhile. And there were a couple of programs where I addressed less than five people.

I remember unpacking my bag one morning and coming across a blank envelope buried in the bottom with $200 cash in it, with an anonymous note and a quote about faith. I still don't have any idea who left it.

Things like that happen somewhat frequently to me, it's a kind of magic you heard me talk about if you attended one of the events.


The only "problem" was people sometimes wanted to spoil me and it was hard to say no, at times, to excessive dinners and the like. It really changes you spending time around poverty and knowing people who are only eating once in a day—you think of them when you're about to do something not totally necessary.

However, it became abundantly clear that receiving the gift of generosity is like giving it, as you are providing an opportunity for somebody else to be of service.

And that's all folks. Effort Less is a wrap.

What's next? You can read the plan for 2013 here.

In case you were unable to attend an event, I presented the core content in these two forums, which you can view online.

Global Forest Call sponsored by — November 18, 2012 (AUDIO ONLY)

Presentation to Indians for Collective Action in Fremont, CA — November 12, 2012

EventsC. LowmanComment