My dad and I were going through my IG page and he said “you and this your sustainability sha”. I smiled and told him we have to embrace sustainability in every facet of our lives…..finance, health, emotions, food choices and the list seems endless. So what exactly does it mean to lead a sustainable lifestyle? Lets start from the meaning of “Sustainability”. In my own words, Sustainability is the ability of a system to survive on its own or in collaboration for a reasonable period of time.
“Sustainability is the ability of a system to survive on its own or in collaboration for a reasonable period of time.”
That being said, we all know this world is not infinite….its going to end one day! We do not know when but in the mean time we are still alive and hopeful of many more years and even after we are long gone, we are hopeful that our progeny will continue to thrive well. Now this is where the questions come in. What resources are we putting in place for our coming years and our that of our offsprings? A lot of people have concentrated on amassing wealth for future generations, some build houses, some build businesses, some store money in ridiculous places. I am not saying its bad to prepare financially but there is a lot more to living than financial gains. Over the past few months, I have come to realise that people will only care about the environment for its financial gains. There are evidences from the turn up of various residents in the few areas covered by the incentive-based recycling schemes in Nigeria. You need to see people dancing and picking dirt just to accumulate points. On the other hand, Mushin was visited by members of the SustyVibes team for a street conference on encouraging people to #StareDownOnPollution. Few weeks later, right beside a police station were heaps of dirt. Now I must also say this – the waste collectors are really slacking. I have experienced it first hand and had to resort to the cart pushers. I suggested in my dissertation that we need an integrated approach but you know in Nigeria, our thesis have found new homes in the Universities’ libraries.
I have had to pick dirt that people throw out of Keke napep and buses, tell people how bad it is for us to continue to be less concerned about our environment and ourselves because the we are the ones who will experience the consequences of our actions now. Lekki and environs had a taste of what I am talking about last week and this is not the first time. As humans we very quick to blame the people in power but fail to assess ourselves with respect to caring passionately about the environment.
The food choices we make have great impacts on the earth. There is great emphasis on the earth because that is the only planet we can survive on. Without survival every other thing cannot exist. Asides from the effects on the earth, our food choices also determine our wellbeing and lifespan. We cannot continue to consume highly processed foods for long periods without experiencing adverse effects. Its not sustainable. We also cannot drastically cut out some yummy treats..that is not sustainable too. So you ask “what is then sustainable?” What is sustainable in this regard is BALANCE. A little bit to the left and a little bit to the right. We also need to move more. A sedentary lifestyle is far from sustainable. Pedometers now come in affordable brands. Challenge yourself to a certain number of steps per day and increase it as time goes on. We should not wait until some strange illnesses start coming before we take action as it would be difficult by then. Sustainability is life. No quick fixes. It should be a lifestyle thing.
Please encourage kids to join in the sustainable lifestyle switch…one step at a time. No hard and fast rules. Its simple.
Eat balanced meals, exercise, tidy your surroundings, prevent wastages, reuse items, recycle stuff…you can see they are not tough.
Note this. Anything done to preserve the environment is done to preserve our existence.Amin
I’ll speak with you guys soon.