Monthly Archives: September 2011

Sustainability as the foundation for bodywork economics

It’s hip to be “green” these days. But what does this really mean? Does it entail big sacrifices or cost a lot of money? How green is “green”? And where do I draw the line? I mean, massage is pretty green already – and I do have to stay in business, right?

In 1987 the Brundtland Commission defined sustainability as that which “meets the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” [1] That’s a pretty lofty goal!

The language of sustainability seeks to understand how we impact people, planet, and profit. These three together are called the Triple Bottom Line [2] and look at the whole picture rather than just the traditional measure of business success: profit alone. One could say that the Triple Bottom Line looks at profit through the lens of sustainability as a holistic perspective rather than just a symptomatic one. When we use only one of the three to evaluate profitability, the others suffer. But with all three in balance, we can thrive.

Think of this project as you would a client with injuries serious enough to warrant working together for a long time. In your heart, remember to hold space for success and full recovery. You’ll be amazed at what’s available to you with a framework for sustainability at the root of each decision you make in your business and your life!

[1] 1987 Brundtland Commission report Our Common Future.

[2] Coined in 1994 by John Elkington (the founder of a British consultancy called SustainAbility). Nov 17 2009 | From The Economist online