Mindfulness Blog 2

Growing up I was always taught to be aware of my surroundings to help ensure my safety while growing up in a big city like Houston. Little did I know that being aware of my surroundings would lead me to being very mindful to things around me. Many people don’t like long road trips but I love watching the scenery and allowing my mind to wonder while I gaze outside the window. Being mindful to your surroundings opens your eyes to things you never noticed when you had a closed off mindset. Not only do I think being mindful is best for the person themself but it is also best for the environment. If a person is more mindful to their surroundings they are most likely going to take better care of it. Marc Cohen made the statement that “it was really hard for him to be happy if he was not well, and it was hard to be well unless the environment and the people around him were well too”. This statement stood out to me the most during his TED talk. To me I immediately thought about a rainy day as an example that backs up his statement. When it is a cold, muggy, rainy day outside I tend to find myself not being well. I don’t eat healthy, I don’t have the motivation to workout and I tend to be very lazy. These actions then proceed to make me feel unhappy or in a depressed sort of mood. An example of this is Seattle. Due to the constant dark and gloomy rainy days they have there, the suicide rates are very high due to people becoming depressed over the unwellness of the environment around them. This talk connected to the ‘Mindfulness and Sustainability’ reading. The reading touched on the fact that is people are more mindful and well, the likelihood of them taking better care of the environment increases. This occurs do to reducing our emotional habits and tuning in to our values and empathy towards the environment. I had the No side of the argument that emphasized that the culture we live in today is posing a giant threat to our Earth. We live in a world that over consumes do to the constant want of wanting more. It makes me question if we will ever be able to change this constant growing consumption and how to change our culture? It goes back to what Marc Cohen said in our video that “The biggest killer on our planet is our lifestyle”. Activity 2 helped me to explore the topic of our waste and what we can do about it as it continues to pile up. Our world lives in a mindset that our waste just disappears into thin air and we don’t have to worry about it. In reality we have more waste than we know what to do with, and how are we going to solve this problem? This reminds me of the movie Wall-E. Although it is a children’s movie and meant for entertainment, it shows what our Earth could possibly turn into if we continue down the same track. A paradigm is the way we view the world, and it poses the question how do we change someone’s paradigm? Our self narrative, future consciousness and optimism can ultimately help us change our paradigm. The better educated the public is about how our actions are affecting this could possibly change the way they view the world. Responsibility mapping helps us better understand our problem and the direction to go in to help solve it. With wicked problems it is hard to know which direction to go due to not fully understanding the problem. By using responsibility mapping, it helps us get closer to solving the wicked problem we face.

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