You are not taking care of the whole circular economy by yourself, there are 7 billion helpers. The extras are more or less a problem but we seriously outnumber them.
You are responsible for your own circle.
Every action you take in your own arena impacts the whole. I take action every day… even blizzard days… inside my own circle. Many years ago I read Bill Mollison’s book on permaculture and it resonated with me so much that it is with me still. It is closer to farming than my “enhanced foraging” approach, but the principles are the same. I especially like the zones. Starting with zone 1, your shelter and doorstep, through zone 5, the wild. He tells you to start at zone 1 and only move outward once you have that handled. I have always found that good advice, and it prevents overwhelm.
In my suburban yard, I usually counted zone 1 and 2. My bees, butterflies, birds and squirrels were content with me there. I kept it all organic and made sure that I fed us all and the pollinators fed me.
I garden close to my home in the mountains, and my raised beds are zone 1 and 2. My lower ledge is zone 3. The Food Forest is zone 5, which is part of a wildlife corridor. I plant uphill for enhanced foraging for me and wildlife.
Of course, those are artificial boundaries that wildlife ignore at will. This morning as I continued to shovel my way out of the snow dumped during our blizzard, I hit the wildlife path that coincides with getting to my truck. Made moving snow lighter and I made faster progress.
While I was mentally thanking my coinhabitants for helping clear our paths, one of them appeared right in front of me and took a good look at me shoveling his rabbit path out. I stopped to chat. He went back up under the Juniper tree where there is no snow and watched me through the branches.
I dug to the end of the pickup and looked longingly at the spot where my neighbor bladed out. I am thanking him mentally too. He and his wife will get fresh eggs and vegetables this summer. Or fresh hard cider? I got as far as I was getting before breakfast and turned back. Brer rabbit came back down and followed me along our joint path to go on his way. I hope he mentally thanks me. Probably so, he visits often. Sometimes I share grapes, his favorite. I planted a hardy grape vine this year for me and he.
I went back to zone 1. We all have zone 1 and it is where we have huge impact on our global circular economy. I work on my 5 acres and make an impact for a fifty mile radius by dispersing seeds through birds and wind, and am pleased with that. What I do in zone 1, what products I buy, how much trash I make, how many petitions I sign, whether I buy toxins, every action every day also has global impact
That is not to dismiss what I do here, it is my circle and I am fully accountable for this place and it makes an impact. What all 7 billion of us do in zone 1 also links into our global circle and can easily outweigh the few problem creators that think they are in charge. They are not, we are. I call it the walkabout.
So what is the good news to add to all this accountability talk? Self-sufficiency creates self-esteem. Our world can be hard on our self-esteem, and as I read negative things about Americans and how worthless and powerless we are, I disregard them.
I know jobs and income have dropped and I create my own home and food and water (now including tasty hooch). I have a large degree of independence.
More than anything, I create happiness in myself, a contentment that is seen by strangers. I enjoy people coming up to chat just like I enjoy the rabbit coming to chat. I don’t need to own either.
I don’t feel like I have to quiz people to find out their “use” to me. I need people for family, friends and teammates. It is relaxing to me and them! Nothing more uncomfortable than having someone interrogate you to find out if they can use you and lose you. Self-sufficiency at any level makes you impervious to that nonsense.
I am thrilled to own zones 1-5. I am content to build a small home and comfortable shelter and a greenhouse. Everything I add works toward self-sufficiency and contentment.
I have lost some of my old pastimes, hanging at the mall and shopping sprees to reward myself for surviving another day. I lost them without pain. My life is full, instead of manic (working for attorneys is manic). It is good to be here.
Side note… I was hoping to get out today. As a lesson to me the neighbor one house farther in is struggling to get out in his van while a grader is clearing the way. He is making no real progress, they have been on the same level 100 feet for close to an hour. The Blizzard Goliath continues to be felt. I will shovel a bit more this afternoon but it is nothing to have a heart attack over. Literally. An old boy died of a heart attack this week trying to hand shovel out. If the blade guy gets the neighbor past my house it is already bladed but steep and slick. It will all melt, around my truck is already down to 12 inches. Patience is starting to look like a virtue. Stay home with warmth, food, water, and safety.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! Stay safe and take care.