Solutions. Let’s focus on those.
by Gary Simons
Solutions! That’s what we need to be talking about more. That doesn’t mean we put our head in the sand about the problems facing the planet. Rather it is not to be overwhelmed, or worse, simply give up and sink into a paralyzed apathy. Frankly, if we screwed it up, we can also be responsible for finding solutions to environmental challenges. Solutions that are immediately effective and sustainable, and form part of the long-term view of what kind of positive change is possible. Actually, come to think of it, pragmatism is secondary to actually just doing what is right, despite the outcome.
In a conversation the other day with Dr Tracey Phillips we were talking about places to begin with solutions. The most obvious, really, are the immediate environments of our own homes. While many reading this may already be implementing the suggestions in this blog post, they bear repeating. If you not only know these things, but are also doing them, awesome. Please forward or share this post then with others you know. If there are ideas, suppliers, etc. that you know of, that aren’t mentioned, please share these on our Facebook page, or in the comments section of this post. That way we continue to build community around not just finding solutions, but also implementing and sustaining them. It is this long-term sustainability that will reshape our cultural views on the planet and us as a global citizienry.
This way of being is no mere intellectual process. It is an integral dance between new thinking and new action. The action, and its positive outcomes, embeds the thinking. The new thinking then leads to continued action in the chosen direction, which in turn ‘rewards’ the thinking brain with good feeling chemicals, and so on and so on.
OK, on to some suggestions, gleaned from a small selection of what is available out there.
The following WikiHow page gives a great intro to various things we can be doing around the home
Water is fundamental for life. Here in the Western Cape we are in the midst of an extremely serious water shortage. What are some of the things we can do in the home to conserve water?
Stick to the water restriction guidelines.
Shower with a bucket in the shower and use the water to fill toilet cisterns.
In that same shower use a low flow shower head. If you bath, share bath water. That may make some of us squirm a little, but as a particular brand says, “Just Do It!”. Take that same bath water and bucket It out to use for cisterns.
Although recycling is crucial , we can find ways of reducing it. Wherever possible use re-usables. E.g Use glass bottles for drinking water. Take this with you when you travel so that you don’t have to buy water in plastic bottles. Get rechargeable batteries for devices that use them.
Eliminate any cleaning liquids, etc that are not environmentally friendly. In fact with ENJO products you can eliminate the need for any liquids except water. Check out their site here. www.enjo.co.za
Faithful to Nature is a business that is passionate about stocking products that are ecofriendly. They offer a great service through their online shop. You can pretty much get everything you need right there for making sure that a clean home is also a green home. Visit them here www.faithful-to-nature.co.za
Do some research on the gadget brands you buy. Support companies that are consciously committed to greening their gadgets.
Take a tour through the www.sustainable.co.za website. Here you’ll find many items that can be installed in the home that will help turn your own home into a mini conservation and sustainable project, including the low flow showerheads mentioned above.
Finally, an important one for those who employee domestic workers. Have they been equipped with the knowledge and skills to work in the home in an eco-friendly way. Jade Khoury has started a fantastic business wherein she offers just that kind of training. Check out her Facebook page here. We’ll have a post dedicated to this amazing work, in the near future.
PS: Next week we’ll be sharing some more ideas that can form part of you living a solution orientated life within the home context. Please share with us any that you think should be included.