Our Cluttered World

Weird thing, consumerism. Apparently life isn’t good enough if you don’t have the latest tech, or the designer wardrobe, or the shows, or the exotic holiday, or the flashy car. Success looks like an 60 hour working week or an overflowing social life or sufficient bank balance to shop ’til you drop.

REALLY? WHY? When did we start needing MORE?

Even worse, by not being busy, by not spending money or not rushing from A to B or heh! try this…….. actually RESTING for a bit, somehow we are not cosmopolitan, we are made to feel we are missing out. Somehow we are not worthwhile. OUCH!

Stop.

Not surprising then that it is really difficult to change our mindset and encourage ourselves NOT BUY something or tone down the ‘busy’.

The consequences are the populated landscapes of the world are busy, noisy, crowded, polluted, cluttered urban centres. The winners flaunting success and the losers with nowhere near a ‘fair share’. In some acknowledgement of the green space that we build over we create a park or protect the last acre (because there isn’t any left) of the woodland or natural space. That is all we give (leave) to nature. Not conscious that diversity needs more than a little patch of grass or neatly planted trees.

This permanent state of busy consumerism ……. is a bubble. Unsustainable. Irrelevant even. The Emperor’s New Clothes. Because, to use Greta Thunberg’s phrase “The House is on Fire”. There is something more important that our bank account or the foreign holiday or the latest gadget. Our worth, our success, isn’t how high up the ladder we are.

So, how about reframing worth?

What if our success is measured by how rich the biodiversity around us is and whether the environment is thriving? What if success is measured by our efforts to make sure the natural world thrives. What if our worth is about how busy we are learning to live in nature, working with it rather than flattening it or moving it out of the way in pursuit of progress?

The world would be a better place if we were measured on the health of our green spaces not just that they are green but the diversity living in them.

So, the next time you buy something, or see the shimmer of a new shiny thing put the environment at the heart of the decision. Our impacts on the environment might be easier to see and some of our decisions might benefit nature if we include nature in our decision making.

Ask yourself:

How will this save the quiet around me?

Will it create a wild space? or build over one. How will this new thing encourage nature to thrive?

Does this help me breathe still, clean air? Will it help society rest or pause from the constant rush? Will my decision unclutter this world?

My question to you all is how can we actively promote quiet and calm in modern life? Nature and the environment benefits from us pausing, slowing down or stopping our ‘busy’. COVID19 has shown us that. So as things get going again how do we still allow ourselves to be ‘doing’, to be busy, to be productive, but enable our ‘doing’ to make space for nature rather than continuing to fill up the world with clutter?

Have a good week x

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