Mindfulness is something that I had heard of and briefly touched on before beginning this class. I have always found wellness of not only the body but also the mind to be very intriguing and important to me. I had tried guided meditation about a year ago but never made a habit of it. After only a few weeks of this class, I have found ways to insert meditation and mindfulness into my everyday activities. Now knowing what it truly means to be mindful in a given moment, I can recognize when my mind is wondering to future tasks and to do lists. I have recently found myself not being intentional with things that I do. After attending this class, I am able to apply what I have learned and can bring my focus back to what I am doing and experiencing. Mindfulness has grown to be something I challenge myself to practice in everything I do and I hope this practice continues beyond this class.
As I mentioned before wellness has always been incredibly important to me. The big take away I got from Marc Cohen’s Ted Talk was that wellness is multidimensional; if one is off, you are not truly achieving entire wellness. All aspects of wellness should be taken into consideration instead of just one or two. Another topic that really resonated with me was the idea that bliss is accessible no matter what state you are in. I personally have struggled with this by thinking that happiness is in a place or experience I’m waiting for in the future. Happiness can be found wherever you are and it is your choice to decide whether you are going to be happy or not. One way he advised to tackle this daily is that for every negative thought there is a more powerful positive one. This exercise can help to get perspective on what to be grateful and happy for in life.
Reading the Mindfulness and Sustainability article helped me to develop my thoughts on mindfulness. Being mindful can help you to focus on current needs and wellbeing. It can also reveal true values that can be cover by a clouded mind which can also lead to unhappiness. Being constantly aware and mindful can cause an individual to become more sustainable. If everyone were to be more mindful our world would, in turn, become more value-based and sustainable. I believe that mindfulness could possibly be the key to change that we are looking for.
As I am apart of Learning Community 4 I read the no side of the argument. This article stressed the consumerism of western culture and the damage it causes to our environment. The western culture is fully immersed in excessive consumerism. This type of living in excess culture will eventually spread to a global influence leading to worse conditions for the planet. If this does indeed happen, higher levels of consumption in the world will require more energy and materials to be used causing greater environmental harm. I agree with this idea as a current state we are living in but I do believe that there is room for change and improvement. If we were to move towards a more sustainable mindset we would then globally influence the world to be more environmentally aware.
For my investigative paper, I have chosen to tackle the problem of pollution produced by the fashion industry. Before being in the College of Human Sciences I was unaware of the amount of waste the industry produces. I have now learned that the industry is the second largest producer of pollution in the world and is responsible for ten percent of the carbon footprint. When I heard of this I was shocked and appalled. Being an Apparel Merchandising major this topic resonated with me on a deeper level. If we as an industry continue to practice the habits and carelessness we do now the pollution created by the fashion industry will continue to rise and obstruct our environment. I am excited to research and learn more about this topic because I believe it will help me to be conscious of these concerns in my future career.
I found the in-class activity the Wildest Thing to be a fun way to exercise creative problem-solving. I believe a lot of the reason problem solving is difficult for people is because they only think inside the box. Creative and wild thinking may not always be rational but it can help you to look at problems from a different perspective and come up with different solutions. This could very well be the answer to tackling wicked problems because there is often times never a clear solution, so to be able to think of creative ways to make the issue less severe is tremendously valuable.