Celebrate Earth Day

     This week a client asked for a card to guide her to the Next Step that she should be taking in her life.
     When I am asked about next steps, I turn to the deck Wisdom of the Labyrinth from the brilliant Tony Christie. I have been giving readings with these cards for several years, and they have proven to be inspired and accurate.
     My client drew the card Mineral, which carries the message: You are part of the earth and the earth is part of you. Get in touch with the earth.
     April 22nd, this coming Friday, is Earth Day, an annual event which highlights efforts and successes in the field of environmental protection. First celebrated in 1970, the 46th Earth Day will be marked in more than 193 countries.
     On an individual level, Earth Day is a time to reconnect with the knowledge that there is a single human family on the earth, and that the decisions we make as individuals have an impact on everyone living on the planet.
Little and Often
     Writing in The Guardian Madeleine Somerville suggests simple changes we can make to our lifestyle which can have a huge, positive impact over time.
     Eliminating disposables is often just a matter of remembering: carry your own water bottle instead of buying a one-time-use bottle which becomes immediate garbage; take a reusable bag when you go shopping. Keep eating utensils in your handbag or briefcase and avoid adding to the plastic-ware in landfills. When possible, avoid paper towels, napkins and plates in favour of reusables.
Love the Previously Loved
     Somerville also draws attention to the role of the fashion industry, and the nylon and acrylic fibers in synthetic clothing materials which make up to 85% of shoreline plastic pollution. Purchasing pre-loved clothes, especially those made with natural fibers, can drastically reduce the negative impact that any individual might have on the world.
     Many secondhand and consignment stores stock brand-new clothes, remaindered from bankrupt businesses; impulse purchases; and gifts which have never been worn. These clothes end up on the racks of 'used clothes' shops at greatly reduced prices. In addition, many such outlets are run by charities and non-profit organizations, providing further benefit to the communities in which they are located.
Try a Veggie Burger
     Reducing the amount of meat you eat, even by one meal a week, can make an unexpectedly large difference. The reduction in greenhouse-gas from that single beef dinner can be equivalent to decreasing your car travel by 500 kms.
     Meatless meals are not difficult to prepare: a cheese sandwich with vegetable soup is not at all exotic cuisine in North America. Plant-based high protein alternatives are more available in 2016 than ever before, with varied meat-substitutes coming onto the market all the time.
     Earthing is a new word for walking in bare feet in nature. It becomes a practice when the walker is mindful: aware that they are soaking up the energy of the earth through their feet and into the body.
     Being present with the natural world can take many forms, including tree-hugging, outdoor meditation, and cultivating crops for food or beauty.
You Are Part of the Earth

    Staying conscious of our role on the planet requires that we engage with an interesting paradox: each of us is a small part of a great planetary family. At the same time, the choices we make have vast importance for how we, and the rest of the inhabitants of Planet Earth, will live.
   Celebrate this Earth Day, and make choices that serve us all.
    I have been supporting clients through change and growth since the 1980s.
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