Aaaack! Is it really that time again? Do I really have to reflect on what I did right or wrong last year and vow to do better? Last year, in my first installment of On Being Mindful, I wrote how I am not at all fond of New Year's resolutions and I preferred to simply be mindful of how I live my day to day life and how it impacts the earth. Questions like Where does my food come from? and How much energy am I using? were on my mind.
That was all well and good but for some reason I feel the need for a CALL TO ACTION this year. Resolutions, here I come!
Get rid of it! Frankly, I've taken the re-use concept a bit too far and my house is clogged up with 16 years of accumulated STUFF that I may or may not ever use again. Since we have no plans to move anytime soon, I'm going to pretend that we're moving. For the next couple months I'll be on a mission, room by room, to rid this house of anything that's not pulling it's weight around here. That means taking a lot of time organizing, sorting and hauling. That also means coming up with some creative donation, consignment, and recycling strategies. Fodder for future posts without a doubt...
Get creative. I love to get busy on my sewing machine...and I have quite a pile of old fabric and clothing castaways to work with. And I've been itching (ha!) to try felting with some old wool sweaters I've got laying around. Whipping up homemade concoctions like Bath Fizzies and household cleaning products has been another hobby as of late, and since homemade is generally better for your health and for the planet, it's easy to justify taking the time.
Buy more bulk. Every time I dump another package into the garbage (or recycling bin), I think...why didn't I buy this in bulk? I'm not just talking granola and cashews here, but flour and oil and dishwashing soap and shampoo... What's stopping me? In part, the monumental organizational effort. The jumble of plastic bags in my cupboards right now is downright embarrassing and I'm going to have to get very creative to find room for all the reusable containers. I might have to post a picture of the current state of my cupboards in order to embarrass me into doing something about it!
Eat less meat. That means actually reading the flexitarian cookbook (The Healthy Hedonist) that I bought last year and going through last year's issues of Eating Well magazine to find new vegetarian and low-meat recipes. I'm canceling all my subscriptions and using what I've already got! The production, processing and transporting of meat is a huge contributor to greenhouse gas emissions so cutting back is a good thing for the earth and it doesn't hurt for health reasons either.
Whatever your green & healthy resolutions are this year, I wish you good luck and good health in 2008! And don't forget that the practice of mindfulness means being aware of your thoughts and actions in the present moment - non-judgmentally!