Glendale Falls in Middlefield, Massachusetts
So my eco-challenge is coming to an end, but it doesn't mean I will stop doing some of the things I have become aware of and changed.
I realized how I am often surrounded by people who don't care about the environment with the same passion as I do. That was very difficult for me, because I felt like some of the people I hang around with think I am weird enough for eating organic, whole foods and caring about my health. It definitely made it more challenging, but it also helped me to remember that I care about my opinion of myself and the environment more than I care about other people thinking I am an extreme tree-hugger.
For many people, it is easy to look the other way or to think that one piece of trash won't make a difference. But it does. I used to be one of those people, but once I experienced the breathtaking beauty of nature, I changed. I had to change, because I knew that if I kept my bad habits of being wasteful and apathetic, I was personally contributing to the denigration of nature and the health of the planet, the people around me and myself.
After traveling to some beautiful places in the world, I saw the natural beauty that existed and I had to do all I could to make sure it was still there in the future.
But deciding YOU care doesn't mean you have to make-over your whole life and become a recycling obsessed extremist who spends all day protesting.
The best way to make any lasting real change in your life is to do it very slowly, one step at a time. So start small, with something like always bringing a reusable water bottle with you where ever you go. Or keep reusable shopping bags in your car so if you need to shop, they are ready and waiting for you!
Remember that every little thing you do does add up. Every person you share with about your commitment to the environment is a possibility for you to inspire someone new. Every time you do something good, you are changing the world in ways you can't even begin to imagine. So keep going and keep trying. We will get there!
Lake Champlain in Burlington, Vermont