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#23 The best things in life are free

...your economy? Much to the dismay and disbelief of many, an economy is not the overarching sphere in which we operate in; an economy simply sits inside the sphere of our natural environment. I’m of the belief that we know little about the environment, and that’s the reason why it’s treated with such disregard. Although science overwhelmingly reports of the damage being caused due to our ‘economic rationale’, we continue to make little change. There are a few reasons for this. First, we are lazy and don’t want to change our lifestyles (or read long posts, bro). Second, people get a kick out of buying things, and believe shopping supports economic progress (job creation and greater wellbeing for all, etc). Third, people have to experience something before they are willing to change. These are of course all valid reasons. The downside however is that these fuel a type of insatiable thirst known as the Hedonic cycle; where the more you have the less fulfilled you are. Basically, this makes people complacent, ignorant, and greedy. The good news is there is an increasing trend of companies who have reframed their design and operating processes to consider the environment – where 32% of NZ businesses from a recent Deloitte survey confirmed that thinking sustainably reduced operating costs, and 31% found that it improved their competitiveness. As far as I’m concerned this is a drop in the bucket for what is possible. The problem I have with NZ is its short-term thinking, where the main exports continue to be dairy, meat, and timber. All primary industry items which require intensive labour, produce low returns, and negatively impact the environment. NZ can do better than this. Unfortunately, it requires change (sad face for everyone as we’re all lazy and don’t like change baby shriek wahhh – shut up). Seriously though our impact is disrupting natures flow, it’s distressing animals by not giving them consideration, and sadly its causing species to become extinct. We can support products, processes, people, companies, and govt to place more emphasis on the environments importance. It seems like a no brainer as evidence clearly shows that sustainability is excellent for the economy (check out the Tiaki fishing net for an example). We need to change our own thinking and habits too though. The environment will do all the rest of the work for free. The best things in life are free! Xx - love nature because we are nature – don’t get it twisted.