You’re awesome. No, really, you are. Sure, I know nothing about you – who you are, where you are, or whether you’re literally a serial killer, but one thing I do know is that you’re reading this blog post right now, which means you’re visiting our website, which means you must care about conservation issues. Otherwise, why would you be here?
And if you care about these issues, it stands to reason that you’re probably taking steps to make sure you’re living an earth-friendly life, which brings us back to that original pronouncement – you’re awesome. We all have a role to play in keeping limited resources like water clean and accessible, and we salute you for doing your part.
But what about those who aren’t doing their part? Despite public attempts to drought-shame, city and state-wide PR campaigns, and even fees and fines against the worst water-abusers, some people just like to act like what comes out of their tap is just as good running down the drain.
So I’m sending you out now to share your Good News with those less fortunate, who may not realize how important conservation is. But that raises the next question: if all those major campaigns haven’t sunk in, how can you convince your friends and colleagues to cut back?
One way? Normalize conservationist behavior. Bandwagons can be used for good as well as ill, but if you can casually mention that you’re switching to a drought-tolerant lawn or that you’re doing Meatless Mondays to reduce virtual water, conservationist behavior becomes less a thing “those people” do (hippies, liberals, eco-nuts) and more a thing that ordinary people can do without fuss.
And speaking of ordinary people, sometimes going green can be intimidating until you lead by example. I know nothing about plumbing, but I feel way better about tackling a leaky pipe if another similarly plumbing-deficient person tries their hand at something and succeeds. If he or she can show me or tell me what they did, even better!
And don’t forget, making earth-friendly choices can have other benefits that may appeal more to the person who doesn’t value conservation. Virtual-water intensive foods also tend to be high in fat and sugar, so a water-friendly meal can also shed pounds. Carpooling doesn’t just save gas, it also saves dollars for whoever isn’t using their car. Skipping showers can actually help your hair and skin absorb healthy oils.
If good-natured testimony doesn’t work, you can always trick people into saving. (Note: The Longest Straw doesn’t endorse lying, but we’re not going to tattle on you for it, either. *wink*)
If you’re in charge of ordering snacks for the office or for your kids’ school, make conscious choices to bring the green. If you’re stocking up on office supplies, aim for the recycled materials. Nobody can object to your conscious decisions if they don’t know what’s happening!
OK, that last one might be a bit much, but the important thing is, when you can get other people, like-minded or not, with you on your green choices, it multiplies your efforts. And then, you’re not just awesome, you’re a rock star.