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Eddy Smith.
Eddy Smith.
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By Eddy Smith

A few days ago, while indulging in my regular workout, I found myself in a captivating discussion with two gentlemen. The topic of the conversation was the developmental potential and the limitations of our beloved St. Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG). I left the gym that day, my mind whirling not from the exertion of my workout, but from the depth and gravity of our discussion.

The consensus was clear: SVG, though small in size, is replete with potential. We have the physical attributes that would make many countries envious: the stunning natural beauty of our beaches, the fertile soils capable of producing an array of crops, and our expansive exclusive economic zone (EEZ) that extends 200 nautical miles into the Atlantic from baseline. Indeed, these unique features position us to trigger tremendous economic development, particularly in sectors such as tourism, agriculture and fisheries.

Yet, our nation is not without its challenges. The mountainous terrain that gives SVG its unique beauty is also a limitation to infrastructural development. The rugged landscapes, though breath-taking, render the task of construction more daunting. However, it is essential to remember that difficult is not synonymous with impossible. We need only to look towards the cities of Sintra and Lisbon in Portugal, where the topography was not seen as a hindrance but as an opportunity to create a unique and beautiful architectural style.

This brings me to my main point: the power of mindset. Limitations, though existent, should not confine our potential, nor should they restrict our capacity for innovation. After all, it is our ability to view adversity as an opportunity for creativity that determines our growth. Our perspective shapes our reality, and viewing our landscape (or anything for that matter) as a barrier rather than a unique opportunity could, in essence, be the enemy of our innovation.

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Our nation boasts some of the most industrious people in the Caribbean. We are home to skilled tradesmen and architects whose talent is coveted beyond our borders. We need only echo the words of the Philosopher John Locke’s that “labour is the source of all wealth.” We may not have oil, but we have a dedicated workforce whose capability and potential is undeniable. Our labour is our goldmine; our innovation, our diamond.

The key, I propose, lies in nurturing a robust sense of self-reliance. While external support can be beneficial and, in certain situations, necessary, we must not let it diminish our drive for self-sufficiency. We should complement such assistance by fostering the belief that we are the change agents in our own narrative. While our government can establish frameworks, and education can provide the tools, it is ultimately up to us, as individuals and as a community, to drive change. Our religion may provide us with spiritual peace, offering us the promise of Elysium. Yet, as we traverse our earthly journey, it is our innate hunger for progress that will catalyse tangible development in the here and now.

Reflecting on our discourse, I am resolute in my belief that our mindset and attitude are crucial to our developmental journey. Let us not confine ourselves to the lens of limitations, but rather use these obstacles as stepping stones towards greater heights. As we strive towards our collective success, we must remember that we are, indeed, the masters of our fate and the captains of our souls, (William Ernest Henley’s, “Invictus”), “It matters not how strait the gate/How charged with punishments the scroll.”

Our destiny lies not in our physical attributes or challenges, but in our resilience and innovative spirit. We have the power to shape our future, and it begins with our mindset. As SVG’s sons and daughters, let us rise to the occasion and steer our ship towards the shores of progress and prosperity.

The opinions presented in this content belong to the author and may not necessarily reflect the perspectives or editorial stance of iWitness News. Opinion pieces can be submitted to [email protected].

One reply on “The power of mindset, innovation in SVG’s development”

  1. Exodus 14:15 KJV — And the LORD said unto ……. speak unto the garifuna of Hairouna, “go forward”.

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