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The Power of Your Voice: How You Can Make a Difference
Having recently started a new job, I had an opportunity to make some new work friends. Over lunch, a colleague of mine asked me what I had done over the weekend. I told her how I was a voluntary content writer for Purple Turtle Co, so I had spent time researching and writing an article about the plastic content in tea bags. She was equal parts impressed and intrigued, which opened the floor to further conversation about sustainability.
She informed me of an initiative she participates in, where plastic bread tags are collected and made into seedling trays, which in turn funds wheelchairs for those in need. Later, I came back telling her of the success I had been having with my reusable menstrual cup and she returned this by informing me of local beach clean-ups organised by Fullers in New Zealand. It was like a game of ping pong, sharing knowledge back and forth.
Spreading information via word of mouth has long been recognised as a successful strategy in the business world, with 92% of consumers trusting recommendations from friends and families over all other types of advertising. So, why not apply the same principle to climate change and sustainability? One only needs to consider how quickly things go viral on the internet to conceptualise chains of communication. One person tells another, who tells another two, and so on. Before you know it, your message has reached dozens of people!
Since friends and family are considered credible sources of information, discussions held with your nearest and dearest about sustainability can pave the way for a positive feedback loop. This loop entails discussions that lead to increased awareness of the issues at hand and, in turn, lead to further discussion.
The simple act of talking about the latest eco-friendly product you've tried, or about a piece of environmental news you've heard about, is enough to educate people and prompt them to start their own discussions.
When it comes to protecting the planet, the invasive end of the campaigning spectrum calls for activities such as protesting, or attempting to prove your point to strangers on the street. However, conversations with your inner social circle can be just as, if not more, powerful. You've already established trust with those people, so you're more likely to make an impact.
Plus, talking about environmental issues needn't be daunting. Sustainability can be woven into your everyday conversations without you even realising it, just like it did for me. And while individual efforts to lead sustainable lifestyles are important, the biggest changes happen when we act collectively. So, use your voice to make this necessary collective action happen.
Your voice is stronger than you know.
Do you have discussions about sustainability with your friends and family? Or have you found any products or brands that have got you excited to start a conversation about eco-friendly lifestyle changes? Let the community know in the comments below!
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