I have been reflecting of late on the economy and the position of so many of us lacking a conventional job or steady income. I found an interesting article that discusses why More and Better do not always walk hand in hand. I have looked at my personal values and "wants" and taken stock of which things REALLY matter, and what it is that really makes me happy and satisfied.
Money in its raw form was not the answer staring back at me. While we do need enough to cover our basic needs such as emergencies, healthcare, food, shelter, clothing and transportation, we do not NEED much else. We do not need trinkets from the dollar section of Target. We do not need a new set of acrylic outdoor picnicware each season. We do not need a lot of dodads that are heavy on the packaging and light on usefulness.
We can live greener by simply choosing to consume less. Make our own picnic instead of purchasing pre-packaged, individually wrapped snack foods. Use cloth food wrap and snack bags instead of plastic. We can repurpose old t-shirts and pillow cases into grocery totes, handbags, or even just dust cloths. Hand towels that have small holes or wear can be cut down and turned into cleaning washcloths. Lighter weight winter clothes can be turned into summer wear by cutting off the legs and arms and sewing simple seams to make shorts and tees. We don't need More (money) if we learn to consume less.
What is more enjoyable? Having a Mercedes in the garage, or spending quality time with family? Riding bicycles on a balmy summer evening? I find that my most enjoyable moments are those that are shared with family in the outdoors. My most satisfying moments are those spent weeding or watering my garden. Or creating a new embroidery or knit project. Or helping somebody. Or sharing something I have with someone in need. Toting home full shopping bags of items I hardly need did not even register on the list when I really sat down to think.
So, think about what makes you most satisfied. What you find most enjoyable. How you feel when you help another. And engage in one of the easiest ways to live green: consume less. Share, do, and create more. And savor the moments in life that really matter.