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8 Simple Steps to an Earth-Friendly Life
Step 1: Becoming Aware
In step 1, we'll talk about how you can become aware of the way you live and the changes you can make. It is not about judging yourself. It is about observing yourself with compassion. It's crystal clear that as a society we need to make some radical changes in order to avoid disaster; however, the slap-on-the-wrist approach doesn't work for me. I don't like being told off because I use too much electricity or drive the wrong car. I judge myself way too harshly, so I don't need anyone else doing it, thank you very much!
This step is about figuring out how to make the most positive choices for yourself and the planet. You deserve the best. We are going to discover exactly what that is.
What Is "Green"?
Living "green" is about taking everyday actions that have a positive impact on the environment. Each day, we make an impact, and most of the time it's negative without our even knowing it. Who would have thought that an innocent shopping trip to buy a pair of shoes could have a negative impact on anything other than your bank balance!
What Is Gorgeousness?
Gorgeousness is not necessarily an external thing. There were so many times when I tried to perfect my appearance, making sure that every hair was in place, every eyelash separated, every fingernail polished to perfection—and yet deep down I felt horribly inadequate. It was often because I was burned out, afraid, disconnected to anything other than the noise in my head. Gorgeousness is a quality of energy. When I'm connected to that part of me that is living according to my deepest values, I feel something inside of me light up. I can be wearing scraggy old jeans and an ill-fitting shirt, but I still feel happy, passionate, and alive. That is gorgeousness.
Have Your Cake and Eat It, Too
Going green doesn't mean you have to go without. On the contrary, you can have everything your heart desires, the caveat being that it has to be for the good of everyone and everything involved. Gorgeously Green will take you to a new level of understanding about the interconnectedness of everything—human beings, animals, nature; it is the same energy that is in all of us. On a quantum level, there is no separation between me and you and the earth we are standing on. We can go ahead and indulge in all the things we desire as long as they are produced with love and reverence for the earth and its inhabitants.
I don't want to be made to feel guilty about the way I live now. I can only do my best, according to the knowledge and awareness that I currently have. It's ironic that most of the things considered to be bad for the environment were considered to be awe-inspiring less than a hundred years ago: electricity and natural gas were miracles, and plastic was to be marveled at. Today, we know these wonderful commodities can devastate and pollute the planet, but it's not our fault. We thought we were doing the right thing, creating a better standard of living. We got more comfortable and then we wanted more.
The problem lies in our lack of understanding about the sources of our everyday necessities. Oil was made deep in the earth's crust thousands of years ago and there is a finite amount. We didn't even think about that little problem. We just assumed that we would never run out. Ugh! No one told us, so we carelessly and greedily used all we could, and now we're in trouble. In much the same way, my six-year-old daughter thinks there is an infinite amount of money in the bank. She sees me pulling it out of a hole in a wall of my local bank and naturally can't understand when I tell her that the hamster palace she's been bugging me about costs too much.
We got it the wrong way around. We thought the earth should take care of us when really we should have taken care of it. I'm so grateful that it's not too late. We can begin to think differently about ourselves in relation to this exquisite planet. I'm a strong believer in the collective conscious. When a deep awareness begins to germinate within the consciousness of a few, it spreads along invisible networks of energy. Before we know it, everyone will be aware and wanting to make the changes to create a decent environment for their children. So let's you and me become the pioneers—little centers of consciousness that will help to heal the earth.
I love that we can continue to evolve and change every day. I never want to be stagnant. I don't want my life to become routine and boring; however, our culture has become stuck in a bit of a rut in recent years. A weird kind of complacency has set in, and it doesn't feel good. Come on, girls—time to shake off the cobwebs, wake up, and go wild. There is so much to discover. We are beginning to understand what doesn't work anymore. Now we need to reach up and find out what does work.
The green scene is exploding and is going to evolve gradually over the next few years. What we know today may be obsolete soon, but the important thing is that we keep reaching for something greater.
Human beings have one thing in common—we all live on the same small planet, yet we're too busy fighting over religion and oil to notice that the twirling ball we're standing on is in serious trouble.
Keep It Simple
The reason I wrote this book was because I wanted to create an easy-to-follow program that would dispel the confusion that is often associated with the concept of going green. If you follow and complete this eight-step program, you will have covered absolutely everything that you need to know. You can close the book, sign the completion certificate at the end, and be rest assured that you have sufficiently changed your life so that it complies with the eco-standards that even the most hardcore are throwing at us.Gorgeously Green
8 Simple Steps to an Earth-Friendly Life. Copyright © by Sophie Uliano. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
Excerpted from Gorgeously Green: 8 Simple Steps to an Earth-Friendly Life by Sophie Uliano
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