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A Daily Practice of Sustainability: It's the Action that Matters

Climate action is tough. We all know we need global and national climate policies and market dynamics to create the systemic change we need to solve the climate crisis. After #Cop26, it's clear that nations aren't moving fast enough to address this "code red for humanity."

This work is not for the faint of heart. It's also hard to keep focused when you begin to think about the enormity of the climate emergency. Many people get frustrated and think they are a drop in the bucket and that their individual actions don't matter. It's true that one person's carbon footprint isn't that big of a deal and that the oil and gas companies want consumers to think climate change is our fault. The concept of the "individual carbon footprint" was pushed by oil companies to shift the burden of climate actions to consumers. Dirty energy choices got us into this mess, but we have to band together to move to a clean energy energy future.

Don't get distracted though. The fact is -- taking action each day does matter. Our actions add up to change the culture. And besides -- it's the right thing to do.

Check out this quote from Gandhi:

It's easy to become consumed by all or nothing thinking. This quote by Gandhi reminds us that even if you may not see the fruit of your actions, but your intention and your practice will make a difference. All our actions -- these one green things add up -- and create a powerful force for culture change.

Don't get discouraged. Keep at it. Every day. One thing each day. Talk about the climate crisis. Focus on climate solutions. Listen to young people. Share information about the positive vision of what we can create together. Lean into the regenerative future. Ground yourself in other big problems we've tackled in medicine, technology, and civil rights. We can and we will prevail.

Here are some #OneGreenThings based on Service Superpowers to bring you hope:

  • Adventurers: Recall a transformative moment you've had in nature. Share it will a family or friend during this holiday season. Talk about the importance of connecting to nature for our well-being.

  • Influencers: Share this quote with friends. Think about a personal obstacle or challenge you've overcome. What lessons might you draw from that experience that can help you keep focused on working toward meaningful climate action?

  • Philanthropists: Contemplate the time, resources, and expertise you've given this year to causes you support. What worked? What didn't? Make a plan for how you'll use your time in 2022.

  • Sages: Ask yourself what parallels you might draw from this quote and the climate movement. Take five minutes to write down your thoughts on how to inspire hope to young people that we can make a difference.

  • Sparks: Write down your top 3 experiences you've had with friends or family this year. Did any of these experience involve time outside? If yes, why? If no, why not? Take inventory of what the outdoors means to you and your quality of life.

  • Wonks: Spend at least 5 minutes outside today. Think about this quote and the importance of intention and a daily practice to movement building.


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