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Agents of change
I like to think that those of us that are writing about a sustainable lifestyle are agents of change. But, it’s not the same thing to chat with someone online about changing habits to preserve the environment, than to talk face-to-face.
The algorithms don’t work on the street
Online, everything has to do with algorithms. Social media shows you things that you have been looking for or things that are of your interest. In real life, you’ll find people that don’t agree with you or people that make you think about things you’ve never thought before.
Change through a door
I have over a year chatting with people online that are on the same page than me, we share our experiences and achievements. And I have since November 2016, knocking on doors aiming to change the behaviour of people, and encouraging them to reduce, reuse and recycle their waste.
I want to talk to you about the types of people I’ve found, the challenges that each one of them has given me and how I handled them. Because if you’re aiming to change the consciousness of your family and friends to be kind to the environment, then I’m sure you’ve been in my position. Today I’ll only name two types of people.
Before that, I would like to be clear; I’ve talked to people from different communities, and different economic backgrounds. There is all kind of people everywhere I go, no matter which social status they have.
I’ve talked about this on my Instagram before, but, since this is the resident that motivates me to continue to work on this, it’s worth mentioning again. This person opens the door with a smile, takes a minute of their time to talk to me. It’s always happy to do more, asks me about what else can they recycle. Tells me to keep doing what I’m doing, that we need more people working on behalf of the environment.
I don’t have to convince this person, they are someone that is on board to collaborate. It’s someone who can even teach us one thing or two.
Sometimes I think people are afraid to admit that we are all human, and we don’t know everything. These people tell me that they do everything they can and they know everything there is to know regarding the waste management, which it could be true. But, I think there is always room for improvement. If we close the chance to listen to someone, we are losing the opportunity to grow.
They say that when the student is prepared, the master appears. I am definitely not “the master” in this occasion. I try to discover the reasons why this person doesn’t what to get involved in the recycling program. It usually has to do with the fact that they disagree with other policies from the council. My final message to this people, to be informed, read and make sure they find out in which other ways they can contribute to the environment. From them we have to learn a lot, they teach us the importance of opening new channels of communications that allow them to express their concerns about the other things that are important for them. Let’s keep in mind that the environment it’s important, but to have a sustainable life it is important to have a participative society, where we can work together to have a better present/future.
What would you do if you were in these situations, to be a successful agent of change?
I’ll keep writing about this in following posts, stay tuned through my newsletter, and/or social media channels.
The greatness of a man is not in how much wealth he acquires, but in his integrity and his ability to affect those around him positively. Bob Marley