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What impact can we have with simplicity and creativity?

Apple has come quite far with these two values. Steve Jobs has built a movement on simplicity and creativity that is alive to this day.  

His take on simplicity was that it is not just a matter of stripping away complexity, but rather it requires creativity and hard work to distil complex ideas and systems down to their essential elements. Jobs believed that simplicity was a key driver of innovation and that it allowed people to achieve remarkable things by reducing distractions and focusing on what really matters.  

Sustainability really matters and we believe it starts with self. So, what if you apply simplicity and creativity to our own efforts to becoming sustainable? At HeartWork we have found two inspiring examples in Bea Johnson’s drive to sustainable living and Nicole Robertson’s Swap Society for clothes. 

Bea Johnson and her family have taken this to the next level in terms of sustainable living. They challenged the prevailing thought of waste-free living to be depriving, time consuming, costly, or reserved for hermits living in the boondocks. By living the example of debunking this misconception they inspired a global movement.  

Bea and her family started their zero-waste journey in 2008, and over time they have reduced their waste so much that they are now able to fit all the waste they generate in one year, in a single jar. They have achieved this by living a minimalist lifestyle, refusing single-use plastics, buying in bulk, and composting and recycling as much as possible. 

In addition to reducing their waste, Bea and her family have also found that living simply and sustainably has brought many benefits to their lives. They have more time and money to spend on experiences and activities that they enjoy, and they have found that their focus on sustainability has brought them closer together as a family. 

So how can you enjoy a richer life based on experiences instead of stuff?

One way to get creative with simplicity at home is to look at your wardrobe. Is there clothing that you don’t wear anymore but is still of great quality (that’s why you haven’t given it away yet)? 

Then organise a Clothing Swap Party or even better, join (or begin!) a local clothing swapping initiative, where you get a bag with clothing from other people. You take out what you like and put in clothing in good condition that you don’t wear anymore. Not only does that help the environment, but it also feels good to be connected to other people this way.  

On an organizational level, how would it be to initiate a clothing swap circle with your colleagues? One for men and one for women obviously 😉

And if you want to become really creative, perhaps there is a sustainability budget that can be used to: 

  • Hire a stylist that advises you to create new combinations with the vintage clothing 
  • Hire a seamstress that is good in clothing repair and creating new styles with vintage clothing 

Sustainability starts with self. Which of your values will you put into action this week to create the positive impact you want to see in the world? Please share with us – we’d love to hear how you’re making a difference! 

This blog is based on the Heartwork newsletter, 14th of April 2023. Would you like to read more inspiring content?

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