Blog 2: Mindfulness in Sustainability


After this week of learning about mindfulness, I have a whole new meaning for it. As I tested my carbon footprint, I thought about all of the concepts of my life that impacts the environment other than the physical products I use. I never really thought about the energy I use concerning traveling, goods, and services. My results of the test regarding just me, myself, and I use 20 tons of CO2 per year. Although this is 47% better than the average, I was still shocked at my results.
I enjoyed Marc Cohen’s TED Talk because it was presented as a harsh reality. Are you doing enough for both the environment and your well-being? Or are you just surviving and not contributing to any good. What mental capacity does it take to make the next step in preserving the environment?
I read the Western Values article last week and I got many important aspects out of it. While I read it a second time this week, I picked up on a few more important questions that made me really think. It mentioned, “sustainability development” as having conflict with those two words as a whole. The question is, “Can development traditionally interpreted within a Western context, meaning economic growth and consumption be sustainable? I enjoyed Jo Kwang’s discussion about how economic growth can improve environmental quality because it is view not shared with many.
I have greatly enjoyed learning about mindfulness so far. I’m not sure why it never came to mind, but I never put mindfulness and sustainability together. I associated sustainability with actions and consequences regarding those around you. I hadn’t thought about the personal step towards taking part in those actions and being proactive. I had been missing a step this whole time.
The Wildest Thing exercise we performed in class was a bit quick and confusing, but I felt as if it was good for our brains to continuously switch our paths of thinking. I believe it enabled us all to think of aspects of sustainability that some generally don’t think of. I know that there were a few topics I read that hadn’t really crossed my mind.
For Activity 2, the problem I’d like to explore in my investigative report is the use of plastics in the Interior Design industry. I learned over the summer at my internship with KSQ Design that there are many sustainable products out there that help cut environmental impacts down. I would like to research how we can better incorporate plastic waste and design. I want to incorporate the thought that I learned in the 11thhour about how design has to be completely “redesigned” because of the damage we have done to the earth. I want to be a part of leaving a smaller footprint!

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