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Steps You Can Take to Build a Sustainable Future

Sustainability | Bush Fires | Climate Change | Green Australia | Environment | Self-Care | Plant Trees

The recent bush fires in Australia has resulted in thousands of people losing their homes, the natural habitat of many native animals has been destroyed and millions of acres of forestry has burned down.

Regenerating our bushland needs to be a top priority for us all but when we are grieving the loss that our nation is experiencing, this may spark feelings of stress, anxiety and depression, which can sometimes lead to unhelpful responses that may include:

1. Feelings of anger and resentment for the lack of action people are taking.

2. Trying to suppress or escape from worries about the future and the state our climate is in.

3. Experiencing feelings of helplessness and hopelessness and thinking there is nothing that can you can do about it.

Acknowledging the loss that our nation is experiencing and reminding ourselves that the most powerful response during times of crisis is to come together as a community It is important to remember that when individuals come together to support each other by taking small steps to restore out plant, that is when we can make a real difference.

Instead of reacting in anger, avoidance or anxiety here are some pro-active steps you can take.

8 simple steps you can take to help you cope during times of crisis:

Acknowledge your feeling about climate change instead of avoiding them.

Create social norms about protecting the environment by talking to others about some lifestyle changes we can all make to reduce consumption.

Talk about climate change and break the collective silence so that more people are aware of those risks involved if we don’t take action.

Inspire positive visions of low-energy, sustainable living so that we can feel some hope about what we are working towards.

Value our planet, take a moment to realise that deep down we all care about our home. If you enjoy swimming in the ocean and you value spending time with your family at the beach, what is something you can do to make sure our ocean stays clean? Or if enjoying going to the park with your friends to have an afternoon picnic, what is something you can do to make sure our environment is left undamaged?

Act realise every small action counts, whether you reduce your water consumption, use reusable bags, take your keep cup to work or plant trees, every step you take makes a difference.

Time is now, climate change is a relevant topic that we all need to talk about, it’s not something that is going to affect us in the future anymore, it’s happening now.

Engage with nature to restore your spirits and connect with what you are trying to protect.

A.C.T.I.V.A.T.E Acronym used from the APS Website

Living sustainably means to be conscious of the resources we are using so that we can maintains supplies for the future by being mindful of our consumption, reducing waste and taking care of our planet. At Ikigai Psychology Clinic, we are taking small steps to create a more sustainable work environment by reducing our paper consumption. Instead of using paper to keep our record’s we use a stylus to write patient notes on our tablets. We are currently working on making our clinic 100% paper free by January 2021.

Here are some tips to learn more about sustainability

1. Attend a Workshop or Event

Brisbane City Council-Brisbane City Council offers a range of events and activities to help you learn to live more sustainably. These are held at our Council libraries, environment centres and other natural areas and include a range of free or low cost classes and workshops on gardening, composting, worm farming and more.

The Mindfulness Collective-Teaches effective self-care strategies at times of Crisis. By looking after yourself, you can have the energy to mindfully take action towards your values of building a sustainable future.

Eco Expo-Encourages people to take at least one eco step toward being more sustainable. If we all take one step then as a whole, we can make a significant difference.

2. Plant Trees:

Queensland Trust for Nature-Queensland Trust for Nature (QTFN) is a conservation-focused, independent, not-for-profit organisation. They work with landholders as well as educators, business and government to develop and demonstrate scalable environmental projects on private land. 

The National Tree Day-National Tree Day started in 1996 and has grown into Australia's largest community tree-planting and nature care event. It’s a call to action for all Australians to get their hands dirty and give back to the community. ​​​While every day can be Tree Day, we dedicate celebration of Schools Tree Day and National Tree Day to the last Friday in July, and first Sunday in August respectively.

In 2020, Schools Tree Day is Friday 31st July and National Tree Day is Sunday 2nd August.

3. Donate:

Greening Australia- Is an environmental enterprise that thinks big to tackle the challenges facing Australia’s unique and diverse landscapes in ways that work for communities, economies and nature.

They aim to bring life to landscapes and restore balance to the natural environment in significant areas across Australia, from the warm waters of the Great Barrier Reef to the cool island ark of Tasmania.

Remember, you don’t need to go overboard, you don’t need to become a minimalist or move to the woods and become a ”hippie” to be sustainable. Rather, limit your consumption, think twice before you litter and ask yourself “is there a better way I can be doing things so that I don’t produce as much waste“? It’s that simple! There are many things you can do as an individual to make an impact, and sometimes it’s about the small steps you take everyday towards your values that will ultimately make a larger impact on the community and our environment.

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