When you think of individual effort and the problems that affect our sense of self, self-doubt can be crippling.
Here at Trusted Clothes, the important part of our mandate is social activism for sustainable, ecologically friendly, and ethical fashion. Don’t despair, don’t be paralyzed by self-doubt, and don’t let your hearts be troubled, is what I say.
Social activism that involves a concentrated effort to increase the consumption of natural fibres in an economy that relies heavily on synthetic/man-made fibres is a tall order to fill. Some of the major global impacts that have to do with climate change and global warming are because of pollution and the consumption of natural resources.
Some estimate that there are over 4.54 trillion pieces of micro plastics in the world’s oceans today. What’s worse is that our current recycling practices cannot keep up with the rate at which these micro plastics pollute the environment and, therefore, our consumption patterns are unsustainable in the long term but they can be sustainable to a limited degree in the short-term. However, this brings forth the question; what kind of world do we want to leave for our children, grandchildren, and even our future selves that are on the road to aging and ill-health? The solution to this issue may come down to the individual.
A Collection of Individuals
As individuals, we make up the larger society that participates in this consuming culture. That means an individual with positive intent may have some measure of self-doubt, a quality that affects most of us. I concluded a previous piece with the question, ‘but what can’t we do?’ I have come up with what I think is a suitable answer; any change in history comes from the dead and forgotten in name and action, but it is seen through their triumph over self-doubt via collective action. Name any movement, it was accomplished using this method, which is to overcome the worst enemy of the self, and help others to do the same.
This question ‘but what can I do’ is a reasonable concern that seems grounded, partly, in some form of self-doubt. If I’m an individual, and I’m attempting to do some good for future generations, the health of the environment, and to also contribute towards a sustainable system for all other living beings, then I have to take into account that I am a single individual and at times, I can feel devastatingly lonely in my endeavours.
But, at the same time, there are reasons to be hopeful and feel less alone making sustainable choices. I think that one of the main reasons to maintain a sense of hopefulness comes from the fact that people around the world are becoming more connected through the internet. As more people have access to devices with internet connectivity, relevant information is becoming more available to people across all social and economic backgrounds enabling them to be able to better educate themselves on issues that are of great importance to their local communities and the world at large. Therefore, community participation, social activism, and economic activism through the use of more environmentally friendly resources like natural fibres/textiles, can be incorporated into the fashion industry and can also be taken into account within the global perspective. This, I think, is a great reason to have hope.
And as with everything written, I could be wrong, incredibly wrong – think for yourself and come up with your own conclusions. I’m human and a writer. I have biases, fallibilities, and quirks – even some funny ones. My words aren’t gold, nor are they a calf.