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Alex Van Der Beek: "My society starts with me"

In this short video, Alex who is a resident of Netherlands shares his ideas on what kind of society he would like to live in and how together we can come to such society. He believes that “my society starts with me” which means that a person striving for a better version of self inspires others around him to do the same. And through the ripple effect, society can change for the better. A creative society for Alex is a society where he can talk to anyone without being judged, and our ability to communicate is our strongest attribute. He believes that we can always find a solution, only if we talk. And when every person looks inside himself and is honest with himself, he can contribute to building a creative society. Hurry up and tell the future parents that it’s their responsibility to bring up independent and self-sufficient children, says Alex, because money should no longer be at the basis of society but honesty and truthfulness. Things are slowly changing, he believes. Changing for the better.

Reporter: We are from ALLATRA International Public Movement, and I'd like to ask you some questions about society. Now we have the project "The Future is Now" about the society, where you would like to live. Can you please describe this society?

Alex: First of all, it is a very interesting question. I believe that the society we would like to live in, or I would like to live in, is a society that basically knows that life starts with each and every person. My society starts with me. I am trying every day to be a better person than I was yesterday. By doing that, I believe that the person next to me will see that change.

And I hope to have a ripple effect on the next person: my wife, my children, my boss, my colleagues. And I think, by that I will have a society that I would like to live in. I don't know what will happen tomorrow, but my ideal future would be that... I can talk to anybody anywhere in the world without being judged. I would not judge you and you would not judge me, but I can speak to you as a human being.

That we have the ability to talk about our differences without fighting about it. Because, I think, the most strongest thing we have is the way we can communicate. And if I give you time to give me your argument, then I can give you my argument, and while we are talking we can find a solution. And once we have a solution, we can work with that. And I think it’s a basis. It’s all between you and me and everybody else here. It starts with us and that’s a society I would like to see. That every person looks inside himself, be honest to himself, be honest to his family, to his friends. Besides, I really hope that we will have an honest and productive efficient society. But money is not the basis anymore for being good or being bad, no, but being honest and truthful.

I think we should start as quickly as possible by telling future parents their responsibility towards the children. Because every parent has the responsibility to bring up a child, that can be independent and can be self-sufficient to have his own life. And so the parents have a big responsibility in that, our school systems, our Universities have a responsibility in that. And I think, after University you should be done a better person, because at the moment it is too one-sided, yes? It’s all about go to school, do your best, so you can make money, and that’s not true because most of the people, I know, they work in jobs they don’t like.

Reporter: Because of money?

Alex: Because of money! And I am lucky that I do a job I really like. So it’s not work, it’s something I like. So it doesn’t matter how many hours I do, because I like what I do. So I have no stress. I’m kind of happy, because I’m from Holland and I live in this country already for more than 25 years right now. I see a little change coming right now. First of all, with my kids, but I also see the young people. Yes, I hope this will continue.

Reporter: They are changing their mind?

Alex: Changing their mind, it’s the mindset. You can be whatever you want, if you really want it. But today society is not made for that, because a lot of young people… they have the responsibility of... They have to pay their rent, which is quite high, their income is very low. So, to make a decision to do something you really like... it’s difficult, because they have to stop working. But they can’t because there’s no back up, that will support them. And in Holland it’s easily: we have kind of wealthy country, so young kids can afford basically to take time out and think what they really want to do.

What unites all people internally? I think the one thing that unites us, that we are all kind of the same - this feeling of being united whether it’s an African or a Russian or a Latvian or somebody from Holland, that can unite us as one people.

Reporter: All of us like a family.

Alex: Yes, exactly.