Sustainable positivity for anyone and any day.
With Spring/Summer ’21 Collection we wanted to inspire positivity. We believe that even small changes can make a difference without overhauling your life. Like using a Notabag instead of a plastic, single use bag.
To explore the topic of sustainable positivity and ways in which we can integrate it into our lives, we invited Sophia Cheng, Founder of With Many Roots to share her experience and perspective with us.
Sophia has reorientated her life around the climate crisis. She’s forged her decade of communications experience into offering workshops, mentoring and words on the biggest issues of our time.
What does sustainable positivity mean to you?
For me it means carving out a manageable practice to get perspective, regularly. It’s not blind to the injustices and heaviness in our world in 2021 but instead is an approach that challenges us to look through our experiences, understand the world around us from a different lens. What have we learned here? What were the nuggets of joy? What am I grateful for?
Why do you think it’s important or needed today?
It is so easy to get caught up in the minutiae, or the day-to-day tasks or the endless doom scrolling on social media that we lose hope but we also lose sight. Zooming out and getting the bigger picture means we can see take stock and see how far we’ve come. And especially since the lockdowns sometimes the perspective shift comes from zooming in and noticing; the blackbird that seems to be in the same branch every morning and that there is more than one type of daffodil! What have you noticed?
Four sustainable positivity practices you might like to try
1. Stretch your imagination
Here is your invitation to day dream. There is much negativity to dwell on in our present but what is the positive future you want? When Hollywood and trending Netflix shows point towards dystopia—imagining a more utopian future is a small act of rebellion. Let’s say we overcome today’s hurdles and overcome the climate and ecological crisis—then what? Where do you see yourself? What is daily life like?
It might feel silly at first and even difficult, but like muscle our imagination gets better with practice.
Extra tip: Join a climate-fiction MeetUp group and practice with others.
2. Don’t stay in your head
Get moving, moving your body that is. There’s a wealth of research that highlights just how good doing physical activity is for your wellbeing. Our body holds onto the tension we absorb throughout the day. If the thought of exercise regimes has you shuddering, think instead of movement, walking just as our bodies were designed to do. Take your limbs up and away from the computer screen or your phone and out into the world. Swing your arms, look up to the sky and remember as Vybarr Cregan Reid puts it we have a brain because “we have a body, not the other way around.”
3. Find a community
It sounds obvious but you do not have to do this work alone. In fact we’ll never really be able to tackle sustainability by working as individuals. So find your tribe, a group that aligns with your values. Seek out a community to celebrate your successes and relate to your sustainability struggles. Like most things, you’ll get out what you put in, so when you’re getting started the most important thing is to show up and take part. Picking up litter on your own might be a slog, a group litter pick is a socially distanced party with a purpose.
4. Be Intentional about your news intake
Buddhist teacher, Thich That Hanh, describes the information we consume much like the food we consume. He adds, “we often ingest toxic communication from the people around us and from what we watch and read.” Are your news sources nourishing you? Or poisoning you? Is breaking news breaking you? It might not always feel like it but we get a say in how we hear, see, read the news. Turn off those Twitter notifications, unfollow those clickbait FB pages, send your newsletters to dedicated folder ready for you to read in your time. Consider opting out and subscribing to the slow news movement instead.
To learn more about Sophia and With Many Roots, check out the following links. And if you’re looking for any activity to celebrate Earth Day, why not learn more about the climate crisis through one of their workshops?
To shop the full Spring/Summer ’21 Collection inspiring sustainable positivity, click here.