While trying to live in an as environmentally friendly way as possible is a good thing, going green doesn’t necessarily mean you have to stress over everything you’re not doing; taking things to extremes can be more damaging than it’s worth.
These days we’re told that we should be driving hybrid cars, using ‘A’ rated electrical appliances and heating our homes via solar panels or wind turbines. We should all have water butts installed, preferably one that has our grey water rerouted into it and our gardens should be turned over to the production of vegetables.
Now while all of those things are good, stressing over the ones we’re not doing isn’t going to change anything and actually doing them could cause us further problems. Is there any point to getting ourselves into debt in order to switch out our perfectly usable fridges, cookers and washers or exchange our not particularly environmentally friendly old banger for a brand new hybrid car? Surely it’s better we wait until we need to change these things rather than feeling guilty because we haven’t?
Digging over the garden and turning it into a vegetable plot may come easy to some but that doesn’t mean we can all do it at the drop of a hat. Not all of us have the ability to garden on that kind of scale and paying somebody to come in and ‘landscape’ it would mean more paying out and the possibility of even more debt. The same goes for installing grey water channelling, solar panels and the rest.
Of course, if somebody went out and bought a huge 4x4 to drive around town in rather than buying something more environmentally friendly then that would be thoughtless but I'm talking about those who have a green conscience and who really do want to make a difference here.
What’s important, in my opinion, is that we focus on the things we are able to do and know that no matter how small they are compared to what some others are doing, we’re doing our bit to help the planet sustain life as we know it whilst improving the quality of our own and others' lives.
If or when the time comes that we can do more, so be it, but none of us can do more than we’re able. And stress is never a good thing.