Sustainability is derived from the Latin sustinere, meaning to uphold, to endure, or hold up against a burden. As I approach and reflect on our celebration of Mother’s Day, I can’t help but pause and consider what the concept of sustainability means to me.
In my guidebook, 10 Practices of Personal Sustainability, The Savvy Person’s Guide to Conscious Living, I maintain that one of the reasons we are not caring for the Great Mother—our earth home—is because we are not caring for ourselves.
Our personal sustainability reflects how we maintain or withstand change and adversity. We see through our behaviors—our relationships to self, to others, to our Great Mother—the habits and choices we make each and every day have impact.
Sustaining ourselves through a more mindful approach to how we support and manage all the aspects of our life is the foundation of resilience, that ability to be flexible, to bend to spring back and rebound. It is also the foundation for connection. Our relationship to the soul of ourselves is more accessible when we have habits that create a high level of consciousness. Living a harried, frenzied, and distracted life pulls us in many directions, but the greatest pull is away from our own wisdom and light.
When the light from that wise self is dimmed the impact is profound. Collectively we create a ripple effect of disregard, lacking understanding, compassion, kindness, and love. Conversely, when we practice self-love, self-compassion, self-acceptance, self-care, our insight is sharpened and through this opening we see our relationship to life expand.
I invite you to consider what this expansion would look like for you. Can you begin to practice subtle shifts in your daily habits that will sustain your well-being, support the greater good, encourage discovery of meaning and purpose, and invite more joy and connection?
Michael Bernard Beckwith says, “There’s a shift that takes place when you’re talking about possibilities more than when you’re talking about your issues. With your issues, your energy goes into the lower frequencies. Doubt, worry, fear—now you’re in that sediment. But if you start talking about possibility, even if you don’t know how to get there, then your energy starts to go up.
Start by asking yourself what if questions. You can begin to rise up, to show up just by asking yourself what if questions. What if we took better care of ourselves, would we take better care of human family and the Great Mother?