Excellence Through Hybrids

The choices you make every moment of your life define how you experience it. You can choose to live by the same old patterns that may or may not serve you in the most positive way. The vehicle you drive is a direct case in point.

You can make an "excellent" choice by driving a vehicle that does the least amount of environmental impact, like a Prius. Or you make a "poor" choice by driving a vehicle that wastes resources and damages the environment, like a Hummer H2. Maybe you know you should buy a more environmentally friendly vehicle but it’s not cool in the eyes of your peers, or you believe that the choice of car you drive is a right, not a privilege.

How do you see yourself? Are you part of the problem or the solution? Do you strive to make "excellent" choices that benefit the greater whole or do you get stuck in our old habits that only serve you in a very limited way? Do you believe the old saying "You can’t teach an old dog new tricks?" Do you tend to defend, support or fight to hang on to values that are outdated and don’t serve you? Deep down inside, you know better, but you just can’t seem to help yourself. So you fall back into your old patterns.

Recently, I made a big change. I took a break from driving my hybrid taxi, and began working as a personal coach. A coach helps clients to break away from whatever is holding them back. Everyday, I help my clients break free to become the person they thought was only a dream. We can all benefit from coaching. It’s a way of creating a bridge from your current state of mind to your desired state of mind.

In every area of our lives, we can make better decisions that benefit not only ourselves but can have a rippling effect felt throughout the planet. Every moment you either choose excellence—or make unnecessary compromises in how you speak, and how you live your life. You create your life moment by moment and move forward, or you just keep repeating an old pattern and stay stuck. You live exactly up to the standard you have set for yourself.

Maybe all that is needed is a new perspective on how you view the world to move out of your old comfort zone that is not serving you (or the planet) fully. This transformation can occur anywhere, even with the vehicle you choose to drive. Thinking about your vehicle not only in terms of your current needs and desires, but also in the bigger picture of serving the planet and society, may give you an entirely new perspective about your life.

Andrew Grant is the world’s first hybrid taxi driver. He introduced his Prius taxi to the not-so-mean streets of Vancouver in 2000, and logged 200,000 miles in just 25 months. Andrew’s Prius was snatched by Toyota. The automaker wanted a chance to study the durability of the hybrid batteries and other components, which held up amazingly well. See this video for details. He’s now driving his third Prius. Andrew has taken a break from taxi-driving, and now works as a professional coach helping his clients achieve personal excellence in various fields of endeavor.


  • Guest

    A well written article.It makes you thinkof the other possibilities as we make choices on a daily basis

  • Guest

    What a wonderful approach to ethics! I ‘hear’ not only the ethics of driving a Prius but how to live a more rewarding life by making our world a better place to live.

  • gvramarao

    Eloquently expressed sentiments. Fully agree with the author that a careful look at our lives would reveal our actual attitude towards life and our fellow beings. Very satisfying profession for an ethical person.

  • paul

    My wife and I both drive hybrids. This means that our friends and neighbors have more gasoline available to drive their Hummers and SUVs. Have we made the world a better place?

  • Guest

    Your choice of vehicle is a statement of “Excellence” towards helping the world on many different levels, not just having more fuel available to be used up by SUVs, and you are not responsible for other peoples actions but that of your own. You are doing “YOUR” part and that is all you can do.

  • Guest

    I really liked this article. I’m writing a persuasion essay for my job and choose the topic of hybrids. I can say I’m a proud owner of one and feel that I’m trying to help make the world a little better. It’s nice to think of other ways to help the world!

  • Guest

    In “The End of Nature”, Bill McKibben wrote about Global Warming and it’s impact on our relationship to Earth. And he used this phrase,

    “We have the moral burden of making a choice”

    What he meant is that once you really understand the enormous impact your lifestyle is having on the Earth, you can’t go on living as you did before. You must choose: make the world better, or make it worse.

    Most people don’t have a clue that fossil fuels they burn today will literally be part of the atmosphere for the next 100+ years. And all this extra carbon will change the climate and create irreversible damage to plants, animals, and entire ecosystems for decades to come. And once lost, that beauty cannot be replaced.

    Once you know this, you can never again fillup your car, heat your home, run your A/C, or buy all that Stuff with the same blissful ignorance you had before. You must choose, and it is indeed a burden.

    But as with other burdens and choices in life, if you choose wisely there comes an irrevocable satisfaction and happiness from knowing you did the right thing.

  • Guest

    Nice words and sentiments but I say get down and dirty in the fight and it is being fought on many fronts. It’s about the bottom line.

  • sevtec

    Anyone who belives the hybrid car is a solution to reduction of hydrocarbon emissions must believe in perpetual motion. Except for the very minute fraction of energy that might be recovered through regenerative braking (better driving can also recover most of that energy) there is really no engineering reason to expect significantly lower fuel consumption, unless the car is plugged into the power grid for lengthy recharges.

    The Toyota Prius may have good fuel mileage, but I doubt that it is nearly as good as such as the Geo Metro with its 1 liter engine. In this case, it is the vehicle weight, and much more importantly the frontal area (drag area), that determines fuel burned, not the power system used.

  • Guest

    Your choices in life does make a difference. While driving a hybrid car alone may not be the sole solution to a reduction of hydrocarbon emmissions there is no denying that to choose a different path and selecting a hybrid vehicle, is a way to start the forward motion towards a solution. Everything counts! GREAT ARTICLE!

  • patrickgfleming

    I have patented a non-friction regenerative brake system that could be used on most any vehicle. I am lookingfor venues to develop it. Any suggestions? See patent#s 6966394 and 6758295 at uspto.gov. Thanks!