BELLSPIRATION CLUB – DESANTILA MURIQI: Youth activism is the key to creating the future that we, the youth, want (Part 2/4)

With Përdit’20, I aimed to raise the positivity within our group, Leo Club Peja, and then to raise the impact by expanding our community. All of the participants in the meeting agreed and as such, we decided to start with this activity, where we would have no restriction nor border. We did not want to let the physical distancing separate us anymore. We wanted to be there for each other. Then everything started clicking in a place like a domino effect. The members liked the idea and we proceeded to host the first positivity challenge organized by Përdit’20. I was thoroughly touched and astonished by how much Përdit’20 had motivated all of us. Watching the energy transition. Seeing the faces of the members convert from one of disappointment from our initial meeting, to now a full room of members with full, determined faces. We were all unified under one purpose and a mission. We proceeded to share our first announcement and our community started sharing it with their friends and networks. Wave by wave, the initiative caught momentum and became quite viral, far surpassing our initial expectations. We received many questions from interested people and we even had to postpone the deadline because of the sheer number of requests. “Spread positivity during COVID-19 while doing what you love” was our call for action. All the smiles that accompanied this process immensely motivated us to not let the end of this first initiative be the last.

To sum up, seeing my idea transform into reality is truly beautiful and incomparable!

2) How important it is to stay positive in difficult times and keep the optimism? What would you say to those who like to call themselves “realists” and who keep sharing bad news because they are “real”?

Well, first let me start by asking “What is Real”?

Let me give an example. “Terrific situation, 2 people died due to Covid-19 today in Kosovo”. This is real, right? It is also really negative. However, if we choose to elaborate, we might say “While before yesterday there 10 death cases by Covid-19, today we witness 80% less, with 2 death cases. This shows us that the awareness and importance given to the threat is raising, however, improvements are still needed”. This is also real, right?

I believe that it indeed is really important to be real, however, it is even more important to be really careful about the way we construct that reality. I do simply not understand the need of sharing something in such a way that demoralizes instead of motivating, worsens instead of improving. Yes, I’m not saying we should be blind and act as if everything is good. What I’m saying is that it truly is wrong to share information just for the sake of depressing people and as such, making it impossible for them to see the possibility of improvement! Why not share information with a growth mindset rather?

I am passionate about the environment, for instance. Often when I discuss with people and ask them why they don’t actually do something to improve the environmental issues we are facing, they simply say that the situation is so bad and now it’s too late to change anything.

Similarly, the situation we are facing with COVID. Yes, it is bad, it is actually something many of us wouldn’t even have imagined. “Words have the power to both destroy and heal”, why not use them to heal? Why not use them to motivate people, why choose to drag them down instead?

This being said, I often also spend time with, how I call them, blind optimists. People who know reality and choose to blindly be positive about it. They don’t do anything to improve the situation, but simply accept it and go with it. Relating it with our current situation, for instance, people who knew that COVID-19 is a thing but chose to live pretending it doesn’t exist and continued their lives “positively”.

I stick to my point that being a realist is crucial. Being prepared for the worst possible outcomes is also crucial. However, what a better way of preparing for this than by being positive. Seeing things from the good side. Seeing improvements instead of worsenings, motivation instead of demoralization. So, please be real, but please pay attention to the way you share that “reality”! Please!

3) Can you share with us how important youth activism is today?

I will keep this one short, straight, and clear. 😊 Youth activism is the key to creating the future that we, the youth, want. We cannot expect a better future if we do not raise our voice and work to achieve it!