making a not so small difference

Back when I was vegetarian (I’m currently on a teeny break whilst in Japan), one of the biggest criticisms I got was that by myself, I probably won’t make much of a difference to the animals or the environment, so what was the point? Why was I putting myself though all of those ‘inconveniences’ when I hardly made any changes to the very reasons why I was doing it?

But carried on being vegetarian anyway. And it wasn’t always easy, but I didn’t mind.

Why? Because I didn’t care that I didn’t make a big difference on my own. What mattered for me was that I wasn’t the one contributing to the things that I stood against. I may not have revolutionized chicken farming, or saved the world from global warming, but at least I wasn’t the cause of the death of a dozen chickens or however many gallons of pollution or waste that would have happened because of me.

The same goes for the reason why I choose to ride a bike instead of driving a car even though I can afford to. Or why I recycle even though it would be easier for me just to chuck everything in one bin.

Or why I’m a minimalist, not an over-consumer, even though it seems that the rest of the world is. People might ask how much of a difference do I think I’m making, living out my life this way. Do I really think just by doing this I can change the world?

Yes I do. In my own little way, I’m doing my part. Even if it doesn’t seem to be making a massive difference, that doesn’t matter to me. Just knowing that I am a part of it, is more than enough.

And let’s not forget to mention how much minimalism has changed my own world. It may not have made too much of a difference in the big wide world (yet), but in my own personal life, it’s taken me places I could have only dreamed of.

Real change doesn’t always mean a big flashy impact that will change the face of the world and humanity as we know it. Some of the strongest movements in history were done quietly, almost without anybody noticing.

First, I buy/drive/hoard a little less, then my friends notice I seem a little happier, so they give it a go. Then their friends do and then their friends and family do. Soon, entire pockets of people are leading a more minimalist lifestyle, in their own little way, without even realizing where it all started (I don’t even really know where it came from for me!). And before we know it, the tipping point comes and the world has changed for the better, even if just a little.

It’s good to know you don’t have to save the entire world to be a hero.

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