I’m tired of hearing about all the environmental doom and gloom. But sticking your head in the sand and ignoring it doesn’t achieve anything.
I’m also tired of hearing that you have to give up modern living and go off into the remote countryside, live off-grid in a yurt and grow all your own food to have even the smallest impact on climate change. Who wants to do that? Not me for one. There are many things about modern living I love that I think we can keep just fine while repairing the planet. Our global connectivity is one thing. It allows us to share ideas across the world and see the impacts of our actions. This connectivity allows me to avoid commuting for work.
The latest UN report on climate change essentially gives us 12 years to fix all the damage we’ve done to the Earth before what they call a “climate change catastrophe” occurs.
Just as modern living, in general, is leading to unprecedented levels of anxiety, burnout and hate so is worry about the environment. To those of us wanting to live semi-crunchy lives where we do all we can to lower our footprint while still living in society, it can feel like we are hurtling towards a cliff edge unable to do a thing to stop the slide towards doom.
Anxiety and burnout lead to paralysis. So many people are shouting that their massive change is the only way to truly fix the problem that it can seem impossible to know where to start and at the same time hopeless that anything can be done. People are feeling frozen and unsure of what action to take or if anything can be done.
The truth is
1. there is no one perfect way to save the planet
2. Taking one small step at a time will lead to bigger change than leaping on one particular bandwagon.
Little changes become new habits that can build on each other until you’ve made massive change.
The best part about overcoming eco-anxiety and burnout by making small changes is it will also help you overcome modern living burnout because you’ll be simplifying your life, lightening your load, and forming a deeper connection with others and with the earth. It is totally possible to connect with and nurture the earth without disconnecting from the world.
But other than recycling everything possible and having Meatless Mondays what else can you do?
Start small. Start with one thing; one change in one area. And then build on that. Make it rewarding by making it something that saves you time and money. Because going green will save you tons of both!
James Clear in his book Atomic Habits lays out the best way to build lasting change by building lots of little changes one at a time. Make it easy, make it rewarding and keep going with one small change at a time until it becomes a habit and then build another new habit on top of that.
Don’t worry about being perfect. Being 100% green instantly is impossible to achieve without driving yourself and everyone around you mad. So aim for 10%. If the majority of the planet became 10% greener it would make a much bigger positive impact on the planet than 10% of people becoming 100% green. The impending crisis is inevitable if most people do nothing. Any action is better than nothing.
10% is a doable goal. A goal you can achieve before the end of this year for sure. And then next year you can move the needle another 10%.
I don’t believe we need to change our lives to look like we’re all back living in medieval times in order to save the planet. I believe we can have all the advantages of modern living without destroying the planet!
To get started download my 10 ways to become 10% greener guide now. But don’t print it! Read it online!