Understanding the Importance of Sustainability and Embracing Imperfection
Avoiding Burnout & Embracing Imperfection
Floods, forest fires, drought, and rain in the Arctic….do you ever feel paralysed by the gravity of our warming climate? The latest news from climate emergencies around the globe is alarming and navigating the complexities of sustainability can be intimidating. To top it off, burnout and cancel culture trends are real threats to progress in the greater environmental movement. More on that below:
The term sustainability emerged in the late 70s and in recent days has become a ubiquitous click bait term. Despite its common usage today, the definition of sustainability is inherently complex as it exists on a spectrum. Cultural and socioeconomic factors are often overlooked but are important pillars in supporting the foundation of modern environmentalism. Due to varying world views, sustainability looks different to each one of us.
There is no simple solution to global warming. The most powerful thing people can do is strive for progress in whatever capacity is available to them. The planet needs boots on the ground, speakers, thought leaders, creatives, and politicians. It also needs community leaders, parents, schoolteachers, and family members.
By embracing the differences in individuals’ roles, we can compound our impact and support each other with compassion, especially when we need a break. A friend of mine told me something impactful the other day… hope is not a strategy, optimism is. To summarise, it’s not enough to fight for the land, we must also find joy in it.
The environmental movement can be a daunting world to enter as memes, mean tweets, and callouts run rampant throughout social media. Instead of resorting to cancel culture tactics to weaponise knowledge, there needs to be a nurturing environment for people from all walks of life to learn and grow.
Progress occurs when we work together, forging community and demanding accountability of corporations and governments alike. In order for sustainable progress to occur, there must be a collective understanding between cultural values and equitable access to resources that address the needs of both today and our future.
On this journey to a better tomorrow, we should not forget to navigate choppy waters with grace and compassion. Progress relies on an ethical framework to meet the diverse needs of humanity, present and future, while creating adaptable systems that help the environment. It’s better to have everyone doing something, no matter how small the act, rather than only a privileged few. Afterall, we are better together.
*In partnership with CamelBak
Want to learn more about Meg Haywood Sullivan? Check out her Instagram @meg_haywoodsullivan