The headlines scream political unrest, natural disasters, and "man bites dog" news each moment your willing to look. A reflection on the last year will produce best/worst of lists and notable obituaries. Other than that, you are left to your memory, and social media feeds to sort out the state of the world.
Let's extend the timeline a bit longer than the last 365 days, to what has changed in the previous 7,300 days. Written in the final days of 2018, this exercise takes us back to the close of 1998.
- Worldwide life expectancy has increased by over 5 years
- Global population grew by a quarter
- The proportion of those living in extreme poverty has been halved and those contracting HIV/AIDS has been sharply curtailed
- Internet and mobile phone connectivity allows learning, commerce, and connection in ways few anticipated
On the individual level, it's a mixed bag:
- I've got more grey hair but making time for self-care
- I miss the kids as young children but enjoy watching them find their way as adults
- Escaped the snares of the Seven Year Itch and celebrated 10K days together with my wife
What change in the last 20 years brings you the most hope?