Wikipedia defines recycling as the process of converting waste materials into new materials and objects. Downcycling involves adapting materials and products into new materials of lesser quality and with upcycling materials are changed for creative reuse. We recycle various products in our households but how often do we upcycle our thoughts, ourselves, our surroundings?
Winter brings change and on some levels even forces us to change. Much to my surprise, a warm, fuzzy feeling accompanied writing the editorial in English after not having done so for a while. Reorganizing my furniture to catch the best possible winter sun and revisiting my cupboards to embrace the warm winter woollies of knitted scarves, thick socks, jerseys and even a change of shoes, created the same sense of contentment. The bottom-line is that winter equals change – whether this applies to our eating habits, our body temperatures moving from being warm and comfortable in summer to a less comfortable, cold environment, or becoming more or less productive.
But how does this impact our surroundings? When we bring about change in our lives by tossing out the clothes that no longer suit our ever-changing needs and shape of our bodies, we can also change our surroundings by donating items to a charity shop or night shelter nearby, by giving faded linen to organizations that revamp it into school clothing for kids and offering blankets to animal rescue havens. The possibilities are endless …
Not all of us can win a Nobel Prize or be a Mother Teresa but we can be the best version of ourselves for ourselves through small, random acts of kindness that will have an impact on someone else’s life – without necessarily bearing witness to it. Are you ready for the new task of upcycling and repurposing yourself and your surroundings?