How To Take Action

By Jane Mountain | November 21, 2011

No Climbing

Trying to figure out how to be a little greener or live a little better can be mind-boggling at times. For every action you decide to take, there is an argument to be made for NOT taking that action.

Want to switch from paper coffee cups to a travel mug? Is it really better, considering how much energy it takes to manufacture a travel mug? Thinking of giving up meat? Are soy products and meat substitutes actually worse for the environment? Switch to an electric car and you’re adding to coal emissions, making solar panels uses non-renewable energy, cutting down on waste seems pointless when industry wastes so much…

It’s not long before you’re stuck in an ever-tightening loop of self-doubt. You can get so caught up searching for perfection that you do nothing at all.

You know where doing nothing leads? Nowhere.

Yes, you should spend some time informing yourself. But once you’re pretty sure what “better” looks like, take a step. And another and another.

On any journey, you’re allowed to course-correct; you get to take as many wrong turns as you want. If one path leads to a roadblock, you go another way. If your plan isn’t working out, change the plan.

But if you never start your journey, there’s no opportunity for course-correction. You’re stuck right where you are right now.

Remember, it’s not about the destination.

So yeah, maybe riding your bike to the store won’t end the oil crisis. But get on those two wheels and I defy you not to start smiling as you peddle along, not to feel closer to your neighborhood, the trees, everything around you. You’ll see things you never expected to see.

And maybe eating vegan isn’t going to fix industrial farming. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try it out. I guarantee it will inspire you to new culinary heights and take you to places you never would have thought you’d go.

And maybe that environmental blog you started will never inspire anyone. Maybe it’s a total waste of time and effort. (No, I am not immune to the evil doubt spiral).

Maybe we can’t change anything. Maybe the world is totally doomed.

But what if we can change things? What if it’s up to us to save the world?

We’ll never know unless we take the first step.

What projects are you dragging your feet on? What would your first steps look like? What’s stopping you? Tell us below.

Got a few more minutes? You might like these:

Hi, I’m Jane, founder and chief blogger on My Five Acres. I’ve lived in six countries and have camped, biked, trekked, kayaked, and explored in 50! At My Five Acres, our mission is to inspire you to live your most adventurous life and help you to travel more and more mindfully.


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