Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Become a Doer

It's Earth Day. You know what that means? My hippie, planet loving self emerges once again. Something I've noticed lately and what has been brought up in my awesome English class, is that this generation (yes, my generation) is a very passionate generation. We do care about certain issues, as you can tell by all of the hashtags and Facebook shares. But do we do anything?

We ask a lot of questions, but do we ever get around to answering them?

We share links on Facebook and Twitter, saying that this issue is unjust or that we support this movement, but do we do anything about it? Do we go out and join the peaceful protests? Do we leave our computers to go and vote on issues? Instead of sharing, we should be doing.

Now sharing and tweeting isn't bad. It raises awareness, which is great. One of the greatest examples I can think of is the infamous ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. Yes, I did one too, as I am sure you or at least someone you know did as well. What was the purpose of dumping ice on our heads? Something that is not as publicized it the raising money part of the ALS, you had to donate as part of the challenge. Did everyone who posted their 20 second ice video donate? Probably not, but others did. The ALS foundation received triple their average annual donations within two months!

So yes, tweeting and sharing and reposting is good because it does raise awareness. But being aware isn't enough. I think most of the planet is well aware of global warming and the hole in the ozone layer, but are we all jumping up and doing something to fix it? Not everyone is. If everyone is aware of something, but no one is doing anything about it, then it's like no one is aware of the problem.

I guess my whole point is don't just share something on Facebook or tweet about something on Twitter, do something about it. Become active in those issues that you are passionate about. If you love the Earth, show it. Become a plastic free house hold or at least recycle at home. If you are an animal rights activist, instead of buying that new puppy, adopt an older dog that may not have another chance with a new family. If you are passionate about anything, make us aware of it by not only saying it, but showing it!

Actions speak louder than words. Becoming a doer instead of just a sharer.

Cleaning out the Closet

1 pair of actual boots
1 pair of riding boots
1 pair of ankle boots
3 pairs of flip-flops
3 pairs of flats
1 pair of Sperrys
3 pairs of Keds
2 pair of jazz shoes
1 pair of character shoes
1 pair of taps
2 pairs of heels
2 pairs of tennis shoes
1 pair of sandals

22 pairs of shoes that are here in my dorm. That doesn’t include the shoes that I left at home because I don’t wear them.

Why do I need 22 pairs of shoes? Why do we need multiple pairs of anything?

Questions like these have come up while reading the book, Fight Club. I am only half way through but it is a very profound novel. I began to ask myself why I needed so much “junk”, so many possessions, after the protagonist of the book claimed that he only had 6 white shirts, 2 pairs of black pants, and 3 ties. That’s all he owned. I understand there are different shoes for different occasions, but why do I have 3 pairs of the exact same shoe in different colors? Yes, I do wear those the most, but I still think 22+ pairs of shoes is way too much.

Shoes. Clothes. Furniture. Technology. All of it is cluttering our lives. All of this clutter is distracting us from actually living.

We can become so caught up in our possessions, that we forget what is really important. Instead of spending time trying to update your phone, use that time to call your grandma, or another loved one. Instead of shopping to fill your closets with more clothes, spend that time volunteering with those who don’t have anything in their closet.

I’m guilty of wasting time doing useless and selfish things and I have to ask, what good does wasting three hours on Netflix do? Nothing except help me procrastinate.  Why not spend my time visiting with friends in the library, catching up with those we may have missed during the school year?

I have been trying to shift my focus from possessions to relationships. And maybe we all should?

“What we do for ourselves dies with us. What we do for others and the world remains and is immortal.” -Albert Pine