We are surrounded by products, services and information, too many and unfiltered. Many companies, and all interested in offering us the product that we cannot do without. Brilliant minds that devote all their energy to understanding how to create or strengthen needs and desires. In this scenario, it is more important than ever to be aware consumers.
Let’s start with the definition of consumption. According to the De Mauro dictionary , it is the “use of an economic good or a service to satisfy a need or produce new goods”. Consciousness, on the other hand, is “the awareness that man has of himself and of the outside world”.
Conscious or conscious consumption, therefore, has to do with the purchase of products or services that take sustainability into account. It means being able to choose in a responsible and conscious way the impact produced on the environment. Ultimately, this means making a choice with respect for others, for oneself and for the environment.
Conscious consumers: breaking down the barrier of immediate satisfaction
Conscious consumption invites us not to ignore the impact caused on nature and other living beings. It also stimulates reflection on the way in which we invest our resources.
To become aware consumers, we need to broaden our consciousness about behaviors, thoughts and emotions. To do this, we must keep in touch with the deepest part of ourselves: only in this way will we know what choices we are making and what drives them.
But it is not enough to stay in touch with ourselves; we need to broaden our gaze to the consequences of our consumption on nature and on others. To do this, compassion and empathy are needed – wonderful tools that allow us to interact in a healthy way.
This means taking into consideration the environment and not just the satisfaction of an immediate need. The question we should ask ourselves is: how can I make my contribution to reducing environmental degradation?
We can do it one step at a time. The important thing is to choose less destructive alternatives that favor collective well-being.
The power of information
Much of the world of consumption is driven by strategies that direct us to purchase goods or services. Conscious consumption does not intend to eliminate the use of services or products, rather it invites us to choose what we really need, reducing the harm to others. We therefore need to equip ourselves with the information weapon.
One of the consumer’s tasks is to understand if he is falling victim to the so-called information obesity or if he is really capable of selecting information for his well-being. This does not mean seeing digital marketing as our worst enemy, but rather using it to our advantage.
The conscious consumer knows that when he moves he generates an impact. Before buying, therefore, we should ask ourselves: do I need this product? How does its production cycle affect the environment?
It is equally important to help others learn about any positive initiative in terms of investing and buying assets. These are small tasks that we can all accomplish.
The values that guide our choices
Talking about sustainable consumption is generally well received in our evolving society alarmed by climate change. However, the gap between what is said and done remains enormous.
Sociological studies confirm that the environment is one of the last factors we take into consideration when making a commercial choice. They count on multiple variables such as price or aesthetics.
We must therefore start thinking differently, focusing on lower impact factors. Some values that can help us are:
The conscious consumer is aware of his own value and brings into his life what he really needs. Moreover, he himself advises in an ethical way: he knows that he not only has purchasing power on his side, but also has an influence on others. Finally, buy products and services from companies with responsible policies.
Psychology teaches us that when we perceive an advantage from our action, our behavior is strengthened. It will therefore be more likely that we will repeat it.
One of the factors that pushes us not to be conscious consumers is called comfort. It is therefore necessary to leave our comfort zone.
In other words, we need intrinsic motivation, that is, in tune with the satisfaction of having generated a positive impact. This allows us to change our consumption.
A habit is a repetitive behavioral pattern. To become conscious consumers, we need to reverse our habits in the direction of sustainability. However, it is necessary to take into account our emotions and, of course, our financial resources. If not, we could never keep them.
Promoting personal change also means putting aside that laziness that leads us to postpone indefinitely without ever reaching our goals.
We can find inspiration in books or guides that help us get back in line with ecological intelligence. The latter is an expression coined by Daniel Goleman, who invites us to recognize the consequences that lie behind our purchases and consumption.
To become aware consumers you need to plan
Good planning will help us reconsider our priorities and follow them. On the other hand, factors such as purchasing power and price also matter. Being conscious consumers does not mean putting our future on hold.
We can also make an investment plan. Remember that conscious consumption is not just about the environment and others, but also about ourselves. To find out if our decision is right, let’s try to ask ourselves: “what I consume is in my favor? How does it benefit or harm my physical, emotional or social health? ”.
In short, each of us can become a conscious consumer and help others to be so ; this to the advantage of nature, of neighbor and of ourselves. We take steps in the direction of collective and personal well-being. Let’s improve our quality of life together by considering the impact of our consumption choices!