Sunday, July 21, 2019
My headphone-less time mowing the lawn this morning gave me a lot of good head-wander-y time, which continued my consideration of how I take in A LOT of information surrounding sustainability in our cycles of consumption and creation. I say 'cycles of consumption and creation' because the ways we consume feed the ways we create. Input and output. In my terms of 'vitality' and 'purpose,' this refers to the things we take in for vitality in order to put out purpose.
I've realized that I've developed my own principles of sorts regarding how to consume (i.e. be a human!) with intention and an eye toward sustainability (of health and wellness for all creatures and environment), yet I've never tried my hand at writing them down! Given how much I love to write, this surprised me. So here goes! I'm really curious to see what comes out. Of particular note, as I write these, I'm also keeping an eye toward how the ideas I lay down intersect with my interests in the outdoors, food, dance/ mvmt and style. My principles (of sorts):
- Buy Less.
- Wear Out: Use items until they've 'met their maker,' then recycle, donate, regift or dispose of them properly.
- Purchase Sustainably: When buying (food, clothing, anything!), conduct careful research into a product's sustainability, and as often as *possible, choose items in which creation, use and disposal promote it. Specifically, aim to buy items made with sustainable and recyclable materials and made in accordance with ethical working conditions, and avoid animal testing and products as much as **possible (*I recognize that it is not always possible, in terms of time and monetary resources, to select items that are ideal in these ways. This is where 'Buy less' and 'Use items until they've met their maker' come in). (** I occasionally purchase leather goods, as well-made items have a long life. I aim to buy goods that have been made from by-products of an animal at the end of it's natural life).
- Re-Buy: When you've found a product in line with your style and sustainability desires, bookmark it and re-buy it when it's 'met it's maker.' It's freeing to 'know your style' and stick with it, especially when the items you consistently re-buy hold up for a long time and uphold your sustainability standards.
- Natural Materials: Choose products made of natural materials (clothing ex: cotton) as much as possible. For items made with synthetic materials, care for them responsibility (clothing ex: place clothing made of synthetic fibers in a Guppy Bag to catch the plastic and other such waste fibers they produce in order to divert them from going into the water supply and eventually the ocean).
- Avoid Packaging: When buying, avoid packaging as much as *possible, particularly single-use plastics (ex: bring reuse-able produce bags and glass jars for bulk items to the grocery store).
- Eat Plant-Based: leaning toward vegetarian and vegan as much as *possible (*I eat meat when it's the only available option and I wasn't able to bring an alternative, and when I am traveling having new experiences).
- Power It Yourself: Walk or bike for transit whenever you can.
- Split the Impact: Carpool and take mass transit when possible.
I acknowledge that my access to the time and money it takes to follow some of these principles is a privilege, and that we all have to follow our own paths on all things. That said, I offer these ideas in the spirit of information sharing and in case anyone else would find them helpful (because so many random people find their way to my blog!).
I'm also curious as to what revisiting this will warrant. Until then!
Tried for a mission statement a couple months ago and that didn't quite feel right . . . the word 'mission' doesn't do it, and 'statement' really doesn't either . . . my way of gathering this has continued to shift throughout the years, though the fact that I DO gather it has stayed consistent.
I like the word 'Intention,' and the idea of something that 'Guides,' though don't know that these words encase it either . . . perhaps leaving this diagram of sorts to do it's own work is what's best. I will say that I'm still sitting with what it feels like to have omitted the word 'Contribution,' as I feel purpose sort of implies that . . .
Some related 'how I Summer' trappings (related in the way that they have to do with how I cultivate my vitality and use it toward purpose):
- I'm thinking perhaps it's a better goal to try for hiking with a dip in water at the end than to try for beaches in the summer - I don't necessarily love the 'laying there,' and am looking to get in more hiking/ woods/ physical activity. If I choose my locations carefully so they have water to go into, and take care in doing enough planning to leave enough time, I think this would be time better-spent.
- I do miss the stuff we used to always do in the Summer when I was a kid (mowing the lawn, BBQ Days, etc.), though am now doing a lot of other things I never had (like Saints games and mowing my own lawn!), creating my own traditions. Thought processes like these are where it's important to remember that not everything is every year, and that I'm learning to relish things taking the time they need rather than trying to shove too man activities into potentially to small a sliver of time.
- I got thinking this week about how I tend to go into Summer thinking it's time to relax, unwind a bit, slow down and see friends. I believe I think this because 1) a lot of PEOPLE do take this tack, and 2) it sounds really great! That said, I never seem to remember that summer is always a pretty thick work season for both me and Kris. When I shared this with him, he noted he has always thought of summer as a thick work season and will continue to. It was helpful to me to be able to assess our outlooks (and their accuracy!) together, as it gives me insight as to how to best operate next to one another through such times. It helped me figure out that while I should still expect to work a lot (unless something major in my professional pursuits changes, which after thought, I don't think will), I also wish to put major effort into spending time with family, close friends and one on ones with people I cherish but don't see much. It helps to know that Kris is content with working while I go hang with friends, and that we just need to remain in communication to be sure we see one another as well :)
I think that's that for those trappings. I had hoped to sit down on the early end of yesterday morning, and then instead on the early end of this morning to do this kind of writing, but intense conversation and a late night (begrudgingly and willingly) won out on both. So here I am at 3:30pm on Sunday.