You may not notice it in everyday life but current trends show a decrease in agricultural lands and wilderness as urban areas spread. Consumerism rules the hearts and minds of U.S. citizens and pollution and species decline are on the rise. Turning these trends around will take action on the individual level. We can’t leave it up to the arguably corrupt political system in this country, which panders to exploitative special interests. We can’t leave it up to the extremist organizations. If the individual learns their own behavior and realizes their own impact and how these contribute to destructive trends we can create opportunities.
1. “Green” living is a virtuous trait, not an obligation
2. It will be too disruptive and difficult to change my current lifestyle
3. “Green” products are hard to find and expensive
4. Earth-friendly preferences and behaviors will make me look cheap and eccentric
To some, yes, but only those that do not understand the needs of our society and environment. Anyway acute intelligence and enlightenment have always been perceived as eccentric. However, there are ways to be thrifty and chic, something I will elaborate more fully on in a later post. Additionally Dr. Seuss says it best, “Those who matter don’t mind and those who mind, don’t matter.” Remember that.
5. “Green” living requires a frugality that will deprive me and my family of comforts and conveniences I’ve earned
Reasonable comforts and conveniences needn’t be sacrificed when making this commitment to a simpler life. The scale or quantity to which you’ve become accustomed to may need to be reduced but you may be surprised to learn that designer home furnishings, state-of-the-art appliances, a fancy schmancy car, fine cuisine and exotic vacations are available in earth-friendly forms. By taking a step away from the consumerism which drives many peoples lives you may just find a more satisfying, healthier, simpler and more balanced life.
6. The economy will suffer if I stop buying conventionally
Businesses and companies follow the consumer; if the consumer wants more eco-friendly products available at a lower price, the producer will supply it. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, every purchase you make is a vote for what you want to buy.
7. I don’t have time to support environmental causes
You can choose how much time, if any, you want to give to support any cause that is important to you. The internet has made it simple to sign a petition or receive timely information at your convenience.
8. It’s hypocritical to advocate and practice environmentally friendly behaviors in some, but not all, areas of my life
Living the earth-friendly way is not the end of the road. It’s an evolution of states. No one can do it all because there is no all to do. There’s always something else you can learn, something else you can start practicing, something else you can sign a petition for. This is not meant to sound over-whelming, it’s meant to sound exciting, there are so many options for how you can do your part in a way that fits your lifestyle.
9. I can’t change anything if some people aren’t doing anything at all
Your efforts, no matter how small, in reducing your footprint makes a difference in that the collective footprint has been reduced. You must be the change you wish to see in the world. Ghandi said that so it must be true.
10. There’s only one right answer to climate change
This is beyond not true. Experts can’t agree on any answer to the problem because there is not one right answer. In my opinion the best answer starts with the individual and that means Y-O-U.
Now that you know the truth about some of the pressing issues surrounding living sustainably are you ready to make a pledge to be “green”? Comment below if you are.