As parents, we often struggle to teach our children the important lessons in life. While it is essential to model those behaviours we’d like our children to learn and embrace, it isn’t always possible in this mixed-up world. We are living in a time when it has become abundantly clear that we have distanced ourselves from the collective whole, the community, in order to define our identities as individuals. Yes, that is important but this way of thinking can quickly set us at odds with the world around us. Perhaps it’s time to look at conservation as an analogy of what life is truly all about.
A Long-Forgotten Idiom – Waste Not, Want Not
The underlying meaning of this long-forgotten idiom is probably something that some parents and teachers should have spent more time teaching. Conservation is the perfect example of what it means to wantonly waste everything at our disposal simply because we can. It becomes a habit to take more than we can ever use instead of buying as needed. A good life lesson would be to teach our children about what is happening to this beautiful planet we are living on. We’ve pillaged many of our natural resources to the point of depletion. Within their lifetime they may see oil wells and rivers go dry because humans took to the point of greed.
The Concept of Taking What You Need
They may see famines of biblical proportions because there isn’t water to sustain crops and they may experience coastal floods and inland droughts. This might be a good time to teach them that there are alternatives to the reckless greed we’ve given rein to in such things as energy. We can teach our children the meaning behind waste not, want not by showing them how easy it is turn the lights off and keep the doors closed when the HVAC is running. By showing them how it is possible to heat water without using fossil fuels with a heat pump like this one, https://www.bpcventilation.com/blog/panasonic-heat-pumps-northern-ireland/, it is possible to show them that they can have what they want and need without being wasteful.
The Importance of Sharing
It is also unrealistic to think there will be times when we won’t have more than what we need. There is nothing inherently wrong with that unless the excess is wasted. This is the point where we show our children the importance of sharing. If we have more than we need, pass some along and even if we don’t have an excess, we can share what we have to make someone else’s life a bit easier.
These are all very important life lessons and they can all be taught with a few simple lessons in conservation. Perhaps if we’d paid attention sooner, we wouldn’t be facing the plight we now are. Having said that, we can always learn from our mistakes so let’s carry that forward to the future.