Being eco-friendly – is it exhausting?

Yes, honestly… yes yes yes yes yes.

This post may seem a bit premature as I only started The Ocean and Me a week ago… but the start of this blog is actually the culmination of two and a half years of learning, research and habit changes to become ‘eco-friendly’. It’s been a long, incredible journey for me already and having committed myself to a decade-long challenge it’s not going to end anytime soon.

But for those of us who have set sail on this crazy eco-living ethos, we know that it has no timeline. It’s a lifestyle.

And personally, it’s one that I love.

Yes it’s exhausting, but the dream is that it won’t always be.

There are moments; a relatively small thing like walking down the street and seeing a takeaway coffee cup followed by a plastic straw, oh and then the millionth bloody Menthol wrapper I’ve seen in the past week! Then I think, “Fuck it, why do I bother?” Cue: twitching eyeball.

Then there are the doozies. Like the news coming out of the US yesterday that an Executive Order has just been signed and it effectively negates any promises one of the most powerful nations on our planet had made to address climate change. Hearing news like that makes my brain leap to the blog my dad jokes about starting – weareallfucked.com. (I know, he’s a really glass half full, kinda guy, right?!)

But do you know what I see behind these two seemingly disconnected events? After I’ve let the frustration ebb?

I remind myself: the system is broken. And we must demand it be fixed.

“Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world.”

– Howard Zinn

That’s why I’ll keep living true to my beliefs. When I get close to the edge and oh so tempted to break one of my core values because it’s easier, or it just tastes good (yes, I’ve changed my eating preferences LOADS since starting down this path – more on that in a later post) – I channel my inner Gandhi and “be the change”. Well, at least on my best days. On other days I slip a little and try not to beat myself up about it too much. I’m not a twit. I know whether I choose to use a plastic straw or not isn’t the be all and end all. I’m just one person out of more than 7 billion. Howard Zinn’s words above sure do resonate with me, though.

What we need are the corporations and government up their game – that’s where huge, wide-sweeping change can be affected. And this’ll only happen if we continue to slog it out and do the hard yards – live a life that rings true for us and show the dudes upstairs what we want. At the end of the day they’ll follow the masses and so if they’re not ballsy enough to do the leading, we’ll show them how it’s done and they’ll follow OUR lead.

In the meantime I go to bed thinking of a tomorrow when I won’t need to change my superannuation fund and banks because I don’t want to support investment in fossil fuels. When we eat out and single-use disposables are a thing of the past. When organic fruit and vegetables are just fruit and vegetables because there’s no need to distinguish. When countries recognise their humanity and welcome refugees with open arms.

That’s when it’ll stop being exhausting. Until then, I’ll see you around – maybe with circles under my eyes but my head held high.

 

Can you imagine a world like the one described above? I can. So maybe I am a twit. What do you think? Is leading a life by example a positive way to instigate wider change or are there more effective means? Do you get tired of being ‘eco’ sometimes? I’d love to hear what you think. – Georgia xx

 

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