When Facebook started, people tentatively put up pictures: red eyed, poorly framed captions, often with a raised glass and their besties. It was a place to put photos to let people know that you definitely had plans on the weekend and those plans most certainly were not watching Bridget Jones’s Diary for the umpteenth time.
Facebook and all social media platforms have evolved. Right now one of my Facebook friends is chronicling her eating disorder recovery. Another is working for an organization on mental health and writing short essays on the controversies of various mental health issues. Many are ranting about the political situation, racial tensions and worldly events that get their blood boiling and their fingers typing.
I am glad that we are opening up dialogues, as well as an understanding to who we really are as people. The true story is never an edited photo with the hashtag "blessed" underneath it. It is messy and complicated and impassioned.
I also sometimes need to escape to a world of beach reads, idealistic thoughts and optimism. I need a respite from my own ideas on how the world “should” be and to start focusing on what I can do, even as a freelancer who wears secondhand clothes.
1% for the Planet is a path for corporations and nonprofits to assuredly give back to the environment while conducting their business. EnviroKidz is a proud member of 1% for the Planet, which means that 1% of all sales are donated to animal conservation groups like the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund and the Australian Koala Foundation.
1% for the Planet has now been opened up to individuals, signifying that you as an individual can commit to donating 1% of your annual salary or net worth to environmental nonprofits. Right now this same company estimates that only 3% of philanthropy efforts are going to environmental concerns.
The good news is that with your giving, you are also granted a slew of good news, such as how much has been given to the environment that year. Feeling empowered rather than dejected at the direction the world is going sounds like a much more productive position to be in.
If 1% of your salary doesn’t sound feasible, here are some other ways to pump up the feeling that the world can be better than you think:
Forest bathing or just plain being outside can decrease your blood pressure and increase your gratitude.
Cut yourself off.
You’re connected. I’m connected. We’re all connected. But man, do you need a break from it. Try not to wait for when your screen cracks or you drop your phone in the toilet. Every day, make an effort to consciously have screen-free time.
Get behind what you believe.
Whether you are working to make people more conscious of composting, standing up for bees, or marching for human rights, find the people who feel what you feel. Not only will the combined effort begin to snowball, it will also make you less likely to sit at home, despondently eating cookie dough.
Sometimes you have held the posture of grief or stress so long that it has become habitual. Your breathing gets affected as your posture gets affected. Eventually, it will change the way the world sees you. Start each day with a deep breath in and a deep breath out.
How the world was yesterday is no prediction of how it has to be today!