Christmas happened again. “Joulu” was celebrated in my culture long before anyone was talking about Christ. In my family, our traditions are a smooth combination of older culture and religion. Overall, there are several different religious or cultural traditions this time of the year. Some of us celebrate the winter solstice, some simply just holidays and time off from the usual work life. Social gatherings, feasting, and gifts are commonly seen, regardless of the culture. The downside effects of this season are overconsumption and stress. All the fuss about gifts and cards we want to/don’t want to/or need to purchase and send – so easily exhausting and guilt creating. This stress is now over, and it is time to focus on the new year, do the briefing, and plan.
When the year changes, we often want to make promises, change our lifestyle, or do something good. Be “better” somehow. It is interesting. Do we notice at the end of every year that we could have done and lived better? I find this deliberation especially important this year. 2020 gave us an unforgettable ride, which is not yet over. It sure is time to make some meaningful and honest promises. We have been like that misbehaving child whose mother has given several serious ultimatums. This year might have been her last warning before the fun is over. As said in the documentary Planet Ocean: “Nature does not tolerate excess.” And we are far over the excess at the moment, in so many ways. How to avoid the consequences? We cannot do anything to the overpopulation of ours. And we hope Nature does not decide to take another action towards solving that problem. We have messed up big time, and it is time to start behaving. It might be a time to be invisible in front of Earth’s eyes for a while and as harmless as possible. We need to walk on our tiptoes, play fair, be polite, pay attention to others, and try to be constructive and helpful. Earn back the trust because change is our only chance.
We can make changes in our habits and preferences. Probably the most meaningful thing to re-evaluate is our consumption habits. What, how, and why we buy, choose, and consume. What is the real value of items and supplies to us? Reducing our consumption and wasting habits has a powerful healing effect on Earth. I have written about consumption here and here.
Additionally, it is possible to support organizations and people who are already working for this planet. Near and far, there are many causes, people, animals, and societies that need help. We have different priorities about who we choose to help, and there is no “wrong” goodness. I have had many debates in my mind when I have tried to make my choice where to put my money, focus, or time. But by helping the environment, we help everyone. Sustainability creates health, fairness, and equality. Here are a few links to different organizations and opinions for you to explore.
- Mission Blue
- One tree planted
- Wildlife Conservation Society
- Suggestions from Vox, best charities for climate change fight (smaller organizations!)
- Ideas from Green Dreamer
- Explore with Charity Navigator (rated organizations)
Where ever we live, whatever we believe in, whichever calendar we use, we all share this one planet that desperately needs our help. I wish you a Joyful and Meaningful Year to come! Let’s work together for the Earth and us.