In our busy world
we find ourselves overwhelmed trying to keep up with living in ways that are sustainable and green, support fair trade, world
peace, human rights…. There are so many ways to better our lives and make a difference; that we get lost in all the
ways of doing good. Not to mention our daily to-do list we are always playing catch-up with. So much is going on that sometimes
we end up not doing anything.
It is not necessary, though, to take on saving the world and overwhelming ourselves by
trying to integrate all kinds of ways of changing our lives at once. Instead, just start with baby steps and discover the
huge impact we can have and might not be aware of yet. Here are some simple steps we can take today to
make this world a better place.
Be aware of your impact. Your impact on your surroundings, the environment and your impact on yourself
and your life as well. Just little gestures and actions can make a difference. Ask yourself: What impact do I want to have
today? And make it a positive one. Be aware of your energy and how it affects your environment and people around you. Smile
at the person at the cash register instead of just rushing through. Start your loved one’s day with a hug and a big
smile. Let that car cut in front of you with a smile. Pick up trash you find on your hike. Positive actions will be followed
by more positive actions, so know that whatever your impact, it will trickle out into the world.
your mug and water bottle everywhere you go. Not only will you reduce waste, but you will also be acting as a role model,
reminding people around you to bring their mug/water bottle. The way I taught myself: I made a rule that if I don’t
bring my mug, I won’t be able to get my coffee or chai – believe me, a few missed coffees and chai’s later,
I learned really quickly to always bring my mug! Always remember the three R’s – Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.
Peace starts within. Start with yourself and practice meditating. If we all find peace within, world peace is inevitable.
Just take 5 minutes every day and either start or end your day putting your focus inward. Focus on your breath as you sense
it filling up your belly on your inhale and watch your belly empty completely as you exhale. Acknowledge any thoughts that
might come in and just let them float away into the sky, focusing once again on your breath. And relax.
To stay focused a mantra can help. Just keep repeating a soothing phrase, such as “I am fully present in this moment”
or “I am whole”.
Bring your shopping bag. Americans use billions of paper bags (from millions of trees)
every year. Worldwide, people use about a million plastic bags every minute. Place your bags conspicuously
in your car, have one in your purse. If you find yourself in the grocery store without your bag –
walk back to your car and get it or just get as many groceries as you can carry. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.
beat yourself up. It is easy for us with all the important ways to make a difference to beat ourselves up when we “fail”.
Don’t. Accept this as a practice as well and discover how you get better with time and with every
baby step you take.
Make a difference today. In your inner world and the world around you.