I think many of us think of how we can recycle, use less and damage the environment the least when we think of how to incorporate sustainability in our daily lives.
My own understanding of sustainability for the past couple of years has been from a perspective of protecting the environment and the earth’s natural resources by trying to reduce my own individual footprint. In a prior post, here, I talked about sustainability in this context and ways to embrace sustainability at home.
There are 2 other facets of sustainability that are equally as important and not always talked about in every day terms.
The first is economic sustainability which typically refers to businesses utilizing their resources responsibly (reducing carbon emissions is an example of this) and considering their social and ecological impact during their operation instead of only concentrating on generating profit.
The second is social sustainability which is a focus on making decisions that are good for the social well being of the community and people in the world as a whole.
By focusing on environmental, social and economic sustainability, we are essentially deciding to be responsible when it comes to the environment, our communities and the types of decisions we make at work within the context of what is good for the planet in its entirety.
How does all (or any) of this translate into our every day lives and how we spend our time and money?
I came across the idea of a personal green budget when researching this.
This is the idea that you can consider your impact on all 3 facets of sustainability with how you spend your time and your economic resources. Some good questions for us to ask ourselves when creating our own versions of a green budget are:
🌻 Does some part of what I’m spending or working on serve to improve someone’s life?
🌻 Is some of what I’m spending impacting the environment in a positive way?
🌻 Am I using my resources and those at work in a responsible way?
🌻 Can I contribute to my town or community more? What else can I do that would be good for my community as a whole?
At first glance, this does seem to be a somewhat idealistic perspective and potentially difficult to incorporate in our every day lives. However, if we decide to take the time to have purposeful intention when thinking of how to spend our time and money, I do think a few simple and purposeful changes that are specific to our own situations can all contribute to and have an impact on our communities and the planet.
How do you feel about sustainability in general? Is this something you’ve thought about – is there anything you’d recommend others consider when thinking of how to implement change?