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TED SPEECH. FULL TRANSCRIPT.

TED 2013.
Full speech transcript:

The business of truth.
I'm going to start with a quote from Maya Angelou

''If you get, give.
If you learn, teach.''
Maya Angelou

I'm not going to teach you anything today, but I will tell you what I have learned about life, about myself and about what i believe is my truth. 

The first thing I have learned is who I am.
I am a fashion designer and I am the founder of Honest by, but first and foremost, I am a human being.

I love how we have described ourselves in our dictionary, if you look up the definition of a human being you will see that it says a human being is a kind and compassionate entity. It was good to read that again because I think over the years I forgot what it really meant to be human.

The second thing that I have learned is my purpose in life. That can be a hard question to answer but for me the answer was very simple. My purpose in life is to be human, and how do I fulfil that purpose? By being human in:
My relationships,
My diet,
My consumption, 
And in my work. 

When it comes to relationships I started by being kind and compassionate towards myself, so that I would be mentally and physically able to show kindness and compassion towards others. In my diet, I became vegan this year, because I believe that the world and all beings living on this planet are not here for me, but I am here for them; to love them, to admire them, and to protect them. In my consumption, I try to consume more consciously everyday by only buying what I believe in. In my work, I think that this is where I have made the biggest change.

Honest by.
I launched Honest by last year in january. Honest by is the first 100% transparent company in the world. We offer our customers sustainable fashion made in Europe. We share all the information about our products with our customers, from the origin of the raw material to the entire price calculation including the mark up we place on a product . The reason why I created honest by is because this service is something that I wanted as a consumer. Because I believe one needs that level of transparency to be able to make the right choices and consume more humanely.

At the moment we are the only brand offering 100% transparency to the public, which makes me very happy as a CEO, but as a consumer it doesn't. So what I try to do in my personal life is help other companies to become more sustainable and transparent, by only buying products from brands that are in sync with my values and by using my voice. When I'm in a store I always ask the people who work there the same questions:
Who made it?
Where it was made? 
And how it was made?

Because I need to know what I'm paying for and who I'm financially supporting through my purchase. 

Another thing I've learned is, all that matters today besides love, is money. And this doesn't need to be a sad thing. Money has become a universal language that is understandable to all. 
And If we learn to speak money well, it can become a very powerful and positive tool for change.

Now there are moments when I do doubt if my shopping really makes a difference. But then I try to remember all the crazy things we do for money. We abuse our children, we abuse our animals and our environment sometimes just to get a dollar, or an euro from someone. That is how important every purchase is. That is how important everyone is. Everyone matters. 

I would like to finish with a quote from Gandhi
''Be the change you want to see in the world.'' 

I think that is my favorite quote of all time because it reminds me that change does not depend on others and all it really takes is one person who remembers their humanity, and that our freedom lies in our responsibilities.

I would like to take this opportunity to express my admiration for everyone who is watching, everyone in this audience, and every speaker today who is already part of the change. I applaud you. And thank you for listening.

Bruno Pieters
2013.