Is it possible to lead a perfect sustainable life? The answer is no. Sustainable living will always be imperfect… More and more people are living under stress from the impacts of the climate crisis and this eco-anxiety is on the rise. It is very common to have the feeling that we are not doing enough. But we cannot forget that small individual actions have a positive impact on the planet.
I buy on Vinted and I receive it at some point, but I still don’t like the transport part… What do you think?
This question was asked by a follower a few weeks ago.
A girl who buys second-hand clothes, who asks for them at collection points rather than at home to reduce transport emissions… this same girl felt bad about buying online, not being durable enough, not being perfect.
Imperfect sustainable lifestyle
Although I wish it were otherwise, we live in a world that was not designed to be sustainable. When we try to change our way of life, we end up with a lot of inconsistencies, walls, pieces that cannot fit together and no matter how deep and strong our motivation, there are things we just can’t fight .
Yes, it’s very frustrating, but on top of that, instead of accepting our limitations and treating each other with love and respect, we blame ourselves for not being able to be perfect.
Do we really need to lead a 100% sustainable life to change the world? No.
First, because neither you nor I have enough power to change the world on our own, we need others. That’s to say, whether you or I get a 10 in sustainability, the environment and society won’t care.
And second, because it’s impossible, perfection doesn’t exist. The simple fact of living already implies that we generate an impact it can be higher or lower, but it will never be zero. Accepting this is absolutely necessary if you want your more or less durable life to be a happy one.
If we only stop to think about all the things we can’t do, all the things we could improve on, all the things we haven’t achieved… we miss everything else, everything YES we are able to do, everything we have already changed, everything we are reaching.
A little history…
When I was in high school, at the end of the course I went to collect the notes. It was a great class, I got all nines and ten’s except in math where I got an 8. What did my mom notice? In 8th. And I panicked, it was the course where I had had the best grades of my life and they asked me for an 8! Of course, I got mad at my mom, it didn’t make sense.
Why, when I’m the one scolding myself for not getting a 10 in everything, instead of getting mad at myself, do I accept the reprimand and feel bad, a failure? And even, in my personal case, by sharing my way of life on the networks, I feel like a complete joke when I’m not perfect (something that happens every day of my life).
How to fight against eco-anxiety?
Tell yourself here that you respect yourself, that you don’t blame yourself, that you feel proud of everything you do instead of feeling frustrated with everything that isn’t, it’s very easy, doing it for real is another thing, but the first thing is to start.
The first step is realizing all those times we treat ourselves badly because we’re not perfect. Certainly, nothing changes, but the fact that we identify these situations is already a big step.
The next is make the most of all the moments when we feel we are on the right track, that we are fine. For example, each time you make a prescription herbal instead of eating meat, or whenever you shop at a small business instead of Amazon. Savor this moment, be proud, you deserve it.
And the third step, perhaps the most important of all although, of course, not the easiest, is help each other but where?
Join the Ecoguilty Imperfect Sustainability Community!
On this path, we often feel very alone because right now leading a more sustainable life is not the trend in our society. Most of us live surrounded by a family, a few friends, a work environment that does not share these values and that does not make our job easier, that generates conflicts and very uncomfortable situations but, in reality, we are not alone.
To the girl who asked me the question I started this post with, I told her to calm down, she was already doing great and I sincerely hope this message helps her catch her breath and to move forward, that it will find support through the Ecoguilty community.
And therein lies the trick, in be active in the search for people like us, through social networks, associations, cooperatives, blogs, events… meeting is absolutely necessary to be able to support each other and grow together, to be able to say to each other “everything you do is great, keep going”.
Carmen Horcajada – Eco-guilty
For more tips on how to lead a sustainable life: Instagram – Youtube