Tuesday, May 15, 2012

teeny tiny steps to change the world

change noun
def. to make the form, naturecontent, future course, etc., of(something) different from what it is or from what it would be if left alone

I first got into this whole environmental/green business during primary school. No kidding, it's true! It's where we learned to recycle and creating less waste and most of all we had a very exciting project about composting when I was in 4th grade :) For a while, even parents set out to create as little rubbish as possible, taking containers to the grocery store instead of using wrappers, etc. 
Anyway, going green in Austria is honestly not that big of a deal as most people are quite conscious about recycling, low energy use, bringing your bags to the shops and all of that. It's just a normal part of life. 
In 2007 Rob Bell and his church started a series called "God is green" and for the first time ever I heard about these things in a church environment. How did the church miss out on such a massive topic until recently??? Later that year, while on tour in Stockholm, I bought a book called "Green Is The New Black" and for the first time I read about how messed up the fashion industry is, when it comes to sustainability and waste. A bit ironic since I went to fashion school and I can't remember a single lecture even mentioning the environmental impact this industry has! Ever since, I've been reading more and more about it and been overly critical of where my clothes come from or what they are made of, if I buy at all haha A lot of my wardrobe has been swapped or passed on from someone by now.
A year later I read "Serve God, Safe The Planet" by Matthew Sleeth and it brought on another layer of how I view the world and why it is so important to steward this earth well.
Probably the biggest impact so far was reading Colin Beavan's book "No Impact Man" in 2010, it changed how I live my life. 
Things like using less water (I still suck at taking shorter showers), turning off lights, lowering the thermostat on my heating by a few degrees, riding my bike, walking up the stairs instead of taking lifts, etc. I even tried my luck at growing my own veg, which worked in London for some reason but not in Salzburg - it's all trial and error haha. Anyway looking back, quite a bit changed since then.
There are still a lot of days when I forget to bring a bag to the shops and I end up carrying groceries in my bag, praying that nothing will leak over my camera and books or phone haha At least I'm trying, right.
The most recent thing I've dabbled into is to create less plastic waste. After watching Plastic Planet, I was disgusted with how much plastic we use and how no-one actually knows what is in it or how unhealthy it really is. As a direct result of watching this film, I bought a water bottle and it's travelled with me for 8 months now, yay!
One of the areas that creates too much plastic waste is the bathroom. One by one I let pretty much all products run out and substituted them with alternatives. My toothpaste comes in recyclable packaging now, I went back to bar soaps and the biggest difference probably is that I went shampoo free almost 4 weeks ago.  I switched to a baking soda/water mix to wash my hair and I rinse it with a vinegar/water mix which I keep in two glass bottles. So random!!
A strange move if you ask me and after reading up on it I was sceptical at first, but my hair feels cleaner and softer than ever before. Also travelling has become very light these days which is always a bonus if you ask me!

It takes 40 days to create a habit. Some things you have to think through and ponder for a while before you do it, others you change in a day. It's all about teeny tiny steps to change the world. Don't underestimate how much you can accomplish by starting to change one tiny aspect.

No comments:

Post a Comment