Often times as individuals, it can feel like we have no impact on the environmental issues that seem to be plaguing us. I mean, how can I make any impact when there are billions of other people? Especially, when a lot people don’t care to make changes within their lives for environmental reasons. This is something I have reflected on immensely. However, I’ve started to believe that through our collective voice we can create change and even if we can’t, I still stand behind it because it’s just the right thing to do.This really boils down to integrity. I was told growing up that integrity is about what you do when no one is watching. Your decisions to change need to be changes that you commit to regardless of others.
I recently heard a quote from an unknown source that carries a lot of relevance on this. “Taking comfort in the idea our actions mean nothing if our neighbors continue to do as they’ve always done will be the hardest obstacle to overcome. The smallest gesture, the most insignificant of resolutions are a step in the right direction towards a healthier world.” This feeling of helplessness on environmental issues that we all seem to share is no justification for us not to change our behavior. If we aren’t going to change our own behavior then who will? And at the end of the day, do you really want to be contributing to the problem?
We need to lead the way and make changes in our day-to-day lives because small changes by huge amounts of people make massive impacts. Our change in behavior drives business behavior. So generically, if consumers decided not to purchase from a current company, that will force 1 of 2 things from that company. That said company will either go out of business or they will modify their behavior to match the desire of their consumers.
I imagine you might be asking yourself, what changes can I make? Well, like most issues, things aren’t black and white, and there isn’t one correct answer. One fundamental understanding is that money drives our world. Your decisions on what you do and don’t support drives the behavior of others. Essentially, you vote with your dollar. This means, for example, being intentional about purchasing from companies that use sustainable resources and use packaging that is recyclable, compostable, or made from bio-based resources. You also want to avoid supporting companies that actively oppose conservation efforts or refuse to invest in environmental alternatives. The question for you to answer is what are the most important issues to you? Let me know in the comments below!