How many times has your town lost its economic reason for being?
Think back to the reason your town was founded. Did it start with farming or transportation? Maybe it was minerals or other natural resources. No matter what it was, I’m willing to bet that it’s not the prime driver in your town right now.
Do you know what the next economic reason was that kept your town alive? Was there a boom? A new factory? Did a highway come through? Even that might not be your town’s reason now.
My point is this:
Every town has lost its economic reason for being, maybe multiple times. The survivors keep reinventing themselves.
One response I got to this was, “If we could realize ahead of time when the ‘reason’ will be lost, that would be a superpower.”
True, but I have another thought. We could deliberately cultivate new ideas all the time. Being “Idea Friendly” would be our superpower.
We’d be able to reinvent our town over and over because we’d always be trying new ideas. It wouldn’t matter whether we could predict when or how we’d lose our current reason for being. We wouldn’t need to guess what our next reason would be. We would only have to try and then observe. And then keep trying new things.
This article first appeared in A Positive View of Rural, Becky’s email-only newsletter. Sign up to get it every week:
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