Skip to 0 minutes and 12 secondsI think the hardest thing is to fight a kind of perfectionist streak and to know when something's good enough to go. The greatest challenges I face every day is bureaucracy. Bureaucracy has been one of the greatest challenges that we have, for moving things forward. One struggle I have personally is sometimes managing FoodCycle at the same time as working full time. It's really tough, it's a lot of work and volunteer management takes up a lot of time. I think growing up and everything else, I've always been worried about being scared

Skip to 0 minutes and 50 secondsand actually making that fear, that fear sometimes can stop you. and actually having that fear and using that fear positively and using that fear to drive you, and to create that ambition almost inside you and push you forward, is really, a really powerful thing again to be able to do. The main setback is government policy. We're all often told never rely on government policy to make a investment decision but what we need is a constant government policy that actually goes in, into one direction. At the moment it seems to kind of flip-flop all over the place.

Skip to 1 minute and 25 secondsYou're always trying to sell what you're doing and make it out to be the best thing, it also feels like everybody is sometimes doing stuff that's better than you. I think sometimes you need to kind of screen out what other people say and what they're doing and also sometimes take things with a pinch of salt because, we always talk about the very best of what we're doing and we don't really talk about the challenges and the things that are maybe slightly more difficult. That's what frustrates me. What frustrates me is it's so slow. and it's got so many reasons not to do things. I'm working on a collaborative project which means that there are lots of voices to listen to.

Skip to 2 minutes and 6 secondsSo, it's always difficult when you're trying to create something that's original and answers the questions that you want to answer, as well as trying to make sure that your project is large enough to answer other people's questions. The difficulties that I face during my work life is Will I be able to work the IT systems? Will I remember what room I'm supposed to be lecturing in? It's really frustrating to see the system failing people sometimes and I can take that really personally. Personally I'd say that when the green groups from society organises events people come in with a closed mind and think they don't have any more room for improvement when it comes to understanding sustainability as a concept.

Skip to 2 minutes and 50 secondsPlenty of frustrations and sometimes disappointments, you come across. We are the only charity that is operating at the moment, there was another one which pulled out. So if we pull out, I know there's not going to be my support. I suppose the one that upsets me the most right now is not so much what's happening in the University but what's happening in the wider world. Where people are rejecting, well... they're not just rejecting science, and evidence, and facts, they're rejecting knowledge of all sorts and we live in a world that's trying to tackle incredibly difficult challenges...

Skip to 3 minutes and 25 secondsand we're doing so while rejecting all of the information experience, wisdom, knowledge, that could be used to inform that. I think personal difficulty for me is not being able to say no to things. Especially around kind of doing things for free and

Skip to 3 minutes and 46 secondsusing my knowledge and experience without being paid for it. Have I had setbacks along the way? Oh god yes! I think academia is a series of setbacks. It's everyday someone telling you, you're not good enough, or your research isn't good enough, your ideas aren't good enough, but the reality is that if you're not stubborn and you don't keep at it, you might as well just stop. If you're trying to push for ethical change in the workplace, I'd say the main setbacks are the indifference you sometimes face. It's not that people don't care it's that it's very hard to get people to go out of their way to act on things, especially if they're in senior roles.

Skip to 4 minutes and 20 secondsA challenge that I face is the feeling that you should be able to do everything. The work we do is long-term, we have been running since the 80's. I mean the contracts that we receive are you know two to three year contracts so every two or three years you know you could be out of work. Now I'm in charge of the group I have people that I employ so I have to worry about you know, people's contracts. People they buy homes, buy cars, have children, you know. There's a lot of the kind of logistics side of running a network that is now more of a worry to me keeping me awake at night.

Skip to 4 minutes and 56 secondsA big challenge for me throughout my working life has been to walk my talk. I go around helping other people think about their wellbeing, giving them all sorts of fantastic tips about how to flourish and then I over work and I am so passionate that I you know, I'm sitting there doing my emails at 10 o'clock at night, and I haven't got time for my kids, and all sorts of other things. You learn as you go but you never, you try not to make too many mistakes, but actually, yeah we do.

What difficulties have you faced?

Life is full of unexpected challenges.

Some of these challenges come from external factors, such as a lost job, a family bereavement or difficult living situation. Others may be down to health concerns or a lack of confidence. Everyone faces difficulties and responds to them in different ways. Facing challenges in life and learning how to deal with them can actually have a profoundly positive effect on personal resilience.

Watch the video, think about it, and take it to the comments:

  • Are there any difficulties you heard during the video that you particularly identify with?
  • If you feel comfortable sharing, are there any difficulties you’ve faced in your life that have either held you back or taught you how to deal with a situation?

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This video is from the free online course:

Unleash Your Potential: Sustainable Futures

University of Bristol