Thanks, Red Cup

I am thankful for the Starbucks red cup. FullSizeRenderI am even thankful for the social media debate associated with #StarbucksCup.

Wait. What? Yeah. I am. Because it reminds me of something so important to our experience which is just how powerful CHOICE is.

How fortunate are we to live in a world where we can choose to give patronage to or boycott based on our personal set of values. Whether it’s Starbucks, Hobby Lobby, Chick Fil A, Planned Parenthood, industrially raised chicken…. as consumers, we are powerfully making choices every day that have a very real socioeconomic impact. So yeah, maybe the Starbucks cup represents a first world problem, but it also highlights a first world responsibility and the privilege of having Choice.

But then – how powerful is one person’s choice of where to shop? I suspect this question is on the minds of many as they seek to gather allies to join an ideological campaign. It’s a lot like voting – But really, it’s powerful even if you just make the choice for yourself. It’s like going to the gym or volunteering at my kid’s school. I don’t really like doing those things but I like being the kind of person who does them. Being an agent of change is less about making others change their beliefs or behaviors and more about starting that change from within – with our own behaviors.

Ontologically speaking, change can start even more simply than changing behaviors but by changing our language or emotion. So while my impulse was to languish over the debate on the Starbucks Cup — but I chose to find the language that allowed for gratitude. I chose gratitude. Thanks Starbucks.

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