June 28th, 2016
# 10 Educate yourself and others. Change your perspective on value and give yourself a break.
Outfit: Black dress worn backwards
Finally. On this last day of the 180 Style Challenge I want to leave you with a challenge for yourself. I challenge you to consider shifting your perspective.
Did you watch the video I posted yesterday? (NO? Go back and watch it and then come back to this…) In the video they talk about a ‘beat’ which is basically pausing to evaluate and possibly change directions. I call that a 180° turn. That’s why I called this challenge the 180 Style Challenge. To turn 180 degrees is to go in the exact opposite direction of where you were going. And when it comes to sustainability that’s what it takes sometimes.
It means changing perspective on our meaning of ‘value’
We are told that it is such a great deal you can’t afford not to get it. Our generation believes that we are richer than we really are simply because we can afford lots of stuff. What we don’t stop to think about is that half of the ‘stuff’ we buy is of such substandard value and quality that, this great deal is in fact a great deal of garbage that will either fall apart by the time we wash it or in terms of trends, be out of style by the time we leave the store.
Instead, if we think of value in terms of longevity and performance, we start to put more importance on factors other than price. For instance, what is it made of? Or how is it made? Other values include, who made it? Does it support my lifestyle? Is it in check with my environmental beliefs? Does it improve the lives of those around me?
Understandably we cannot answer everything, and sometimes the answers are not what we want to hear; sometimes our choices are limited. But, I do believe that taking a step back to even ask the questions will eventually give us a more balanced perspective to consuming and to purchasing things, and that’s something that we can feel good about.
I recently read a post about becoming sustainable, and I’d like to end today with an excerpt from it, as it echoes my sentiments perfectly. We cannot expect perfection when we are striving for such a radical change, but we can keep going slowly and with intention: One step at a time.
From the quote by George Eliot who once wrote of this, “It will never rain roses… When we want to have more roses, we must plant more roses.” Erin, the author of “Design For Mankind”, uses the metaphor of planting and growing roses as an image for sustainable living. Here’s what she said,
“Slow living is a slow process. We will get it right and we will get it wrong. Our garden will bloom for months and then we’ll lose focus – life will get busy, or hard – and we’ll forget to pay attention to our efforts. We’ll wish for the roses to rain again, for life to be simple again, for the work to get easier, and when will it get easier?
Planting will never be easier.
But the roses are worth it, nearly every time.”