Today is “Blog Action Day,” in which bloggers around the world are invited to write about a single important issue. The chosen topic: the environment.
Sometimes we face something so enormous that anything short of miraculous seems inconsequential and pointless. Caring for the environment, for example. It’s a woolly mammoth of a topic. How do we get to where we’re actually making a difference? Realistically, we can’t all drive hybrids, eat only locally-grown food, install solar panels, and buy exclusively fair trade and green products (though these are all admirable actions). But we can all choose to do something small, and that’s what I want to write about today.
I’m a believer in the significance of small actions and baby steps. Large changes are made cumulatively through small, everyday actions.
I long to accomplish a great and noble task, but it is my chief duty to accomplish humble tasks as though they were great and noble. The world is moved along, not only by the mighty shoves of its heroes, but also by the aggregate of the tiny pushes of each honest worker.
Here are, in my opinion, the simplest three baby steps that can make a difference for our environment:
- Recycle plastic and glass bottles.
- Use reusable grocery bags. (Many stores will give you a cash discount for bringing your own bags.)
- Replace incandescent light bulbs with compact florescent light bulbs.
We cannot live for ourselves alone. Our lives are connected by a thousand invisible threads, and along these sympathetic fibers, our actions run as causes and return to us as results.
Caring for the environment is an act of magnanimity toward the world that will carry on after we are gone. It’s our gift to give, and it’s our responsibility.
Jean Giono’s story, The Man Who Planted Trees, illustrates this beautifully. (Though it is available for purchase as a printed book, I’m including a link to an online version, because Giono’s wish was for this story to be available free to all in order to cultivate a love of planting trees.)
Today, Blissful readers, I encourage you to think of something you can do in your everyday life to honor the environment.