Yesterday, October 15th was “Blog Action Day” – an event I’ve participated in before where each year bloggers around the world all write for the same cause on the same day. This year the cause is global warming, so once again that’s an issue I’m keen to write about. Given that it’s still the 15th in some parts of the world, I figure I can sneak this one in. You should definitely check out some other blogs who are also participating at the Blog Action Day website.
In considering the issue of global warming, the immediate temptation is to think really big picture, and in so doing effectively out-source any sense of responsibility. But societal change rarely finds leadership in political leaders: rather in the gradual change that comes about through considered action from the general populous.
So as I think about my own reaction to the climate change reality, I’m struck at the paralells with our current attempts to lose weight. Both recognise that the way our lives are structured at the moment is essentially unsustainable. Both are fighting against greed and laziness. I thought I might share the closest I can come up with for a method for fighting my carbon obesity.
1. Make the big decision
For Bec and I, we’ve had enough discussions about Climate Change to recognise that we both believe that it’s a reality for the world, and that we are compelled to do something about it. Making the big decision that you want to change something about the way you’re living has to be the starting point.
2. Make millions of little decisions
Having done the easy part: deciding that you’re going to side with the good guys in the battle for societal change, there now comes the much harder part. In the same way as you make a weight-related decision every time you reject or accept the opportunity to snack on a deep fried mars bar – there are millions of decisions we make (or fail to make) that can have an impact on our carbon footprint. Some are big (our two houses since we got married were deliberately near train stations so we could use public transport as much as possible), others not so big (switching the lights off).But the bigger point is that every time you make any decision: whether a big imposition or not, you change something in your mindset. And it becomes easier to make the right choice next time
3. Journey with other people
The reason that we’ve seen relatively positive results with our latest health-kick has been that we’ve done it with my family. All of a sudden you have a group of people that you’re taking the same journey with: people you can encourage, spur on, get competitive with, etc.
So that’s my advice. Save the planet, one light switch at a time.