Before doing research on mindfulness, I hadn’t heard of the term before and didn’t know what it meant. To my surprise, I liked what I found. Mindfulness practice leads to improved physical and mental health. As a person who suffers from anxiety, I have found that practicing mindfulness has helped to reduce my anxiety. I’ve been practicing my mindfulness at night before I go to bed, and have noticed myself falling asleep faster. When turning to my partner to discuss our researched findings on mindfulness, we talked about how important it is to be mindful, yet how not many people practice it. Our class discussion was centered around whether or not implementing mindfulness would or can work in our society. We came to the conclusion that convincing older generations to practice it would become extremely difficult because they are so set in their ways.
On Thursday, my shoulder partner and I discussed how the no author felt about sustainability and consumerism related to it. The article we were read in class was about how the fashion industry is trying to become more sustainable. For example, one point they made about a company’s return and incentive programs made me think about how this is still encouraging consumerism. The no author would have thought that while it’s great that they are trying to become sustainable, this policy is still encouraging consumerism by incentivizing it. This leads people to still over-consume, even when they feel like they are being sustainable. Companies also aren’t cutting down their production when they do things like this too. Producing clothes emits carbon into the atmosphere and consumes and pollutes water. It’s misleading when companies try to suggest that they are making great strides in being more sustainable, because they really aren’t.
I think one of my major takeaways this week was really understanding how much importance our society places on consumerism. I was interested in learning how consumerism grew rapidly from the creation of credit. Both the no article and the mindfulness article we read in class really made me think about how much importance our society places on material objects. We are so concerned with having the latest and greatest, be it clothes or technology. I wish that our society instead placed an importance on how long a product lasts. If this was how our society felt about material possessions, then I’m sure that we wouldn’t be over consuming like we do today. Advertisements also contribute to our over consumption as well. Knowing that we are influenced to consume by society has led me to look at my own life and how I want to live. I find myself buying a couple of new clothing items about once a month, so I want to challenge myself to either shop at thrift stores or continue to wear my clothes until they no longer protect my body. And while I am only one person, I think that making small steps to live more sustainably like this can help to solve some of society’s larger problems.