blog post from 17 November 2012:
started writing this blog post a few days ago and then ironically
experienced my own 'tipping point', something that happened to change my
perspective and set me on a different course of action]
A tipping point is
described variously as the threshold or moment of critical mass or the
crisis stage in a process. In physics it is "the point
at which an object is displaced from a state of stable equilibrium into
a new, different state". Malcolm Gladwell in his book 'The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference' (2000) talks
about a social epidemic being dependent on the involvement of a few
people with a "particular and rare set of social gifts", the 80/20
And these people he
describes as connectors, information specialists and persuaders. With
networks, knowledge and powerful negotiation skills. Gladwell mentions
wanting to show people how to start "positive epidemics of their own",
making sense of the world and it being a "very fun ride". In the crazy
world of psychiatric services where consumers are in danger of being
consumed, it might be the only way of bringing about transformative
system change and a new way of being.
By understanding the
tipping point Gladwell suggests that we have a way of "decoding" the
world around us, and coming to terms with sudden change. Which despite
our best efforts is irresistible. As in the movements of social change
that have swept society along, started by the few with a commitment to
change. An exciting phenomena especially in terms of psychiatric system
change. For those of us who are working to transform a system that is
oppressive, and where the threat of force is ever present.
I take hope from the
reminder that "Things can happen all at once, and little changes can
make a huge difference.". Here's to little changes and huge
Here's tae us
Wha's like us
And they're a' deid
Mair's the pity!
May those who live truly be always believed,
And those who deceive us be always deceived.
Here's to the men of all classes,
Who through lasses and glasses
Will make themselves asses!
I drink to the health of another,
And the other I drink to is he
In the hope that he drinks to another,
And the other he drinks to is me.
Then let us toast John Barleycorn,
Each man a glass in hand
And may his great prosperity
Ne'er fail in old Scotland!
this isn't an exhortation to drink alcohol as I don't drink it myself
but rather an encouragement to keep on keeping on!]