Sophie’s story

I often think to myself when things aren’t going well to open the curtains which cover the windows and open my eyelids and look at the world around myself. All around is a beautiful ecosystem working together ensuring that the most important processes occur. Every animal and plant has its essential part and role in the environment. I also have an essential part in this ecosystem, I am being effective in completing my role.

Just by looking at all of the leaf litter on the ground in Autumn and thinking about the millions of tiny cells, detritivores, which are breaking down these old leaves. Feeding the largest trees. Trees only  able to grow so large because of the tiniest detritivores breaking the leaf litter down. Even the jobs which I may think are insignificant can have a massive effect. We all have a large impact on the stability of the ecosystem. It’s up to you what type of impact you have on it.

Once I have decided to wake up, I usually turn on the news while eating my breakfast just to hear about all of the negative things occurring in this world. The news is full of information about wars, death, murder, recession, unemployment, climate change and it goes on. All of these news stories are essentially telling us how much change there needs to be for us to be able to slow down the impact that us humans are having. I often think surely there is just too much now? We are having such an impact on the world that at the rate that we are using the resources, we are a part of an unsustainable system. Surely there has been too much damage for us to be able to reverse the trend? But there is so much that every single person can do. Think back to the detrivitores, it is only because of these tiny cells that large trees can survive and be so effective.

One person can have a great effect. You can change the impact that you have on this earth by small steps. There is no need to radically change everything at once.

When sitting on the tube I often look at all of the people which are on the same carriage as me. Many of them are reading newspapers, listening to music, playing games on their tablets or reading books on their kindles. It greatly confuses me how easily people have accepted the change that has occurred in technology over recent years, but can’t think about a change in other areas of their lives. People readily accepted the changes in technology because it made life a lot easier for them, so the change occurred with ease.

The members of the public who are sat on the tube seem to be going about their lives and they don’t seem to be worried at all by what is in the news. Many are reading what is happening in the world around them and having very little reaction to these stories. Why should I worry so much, if all of the other people on this carriage and maybe in the world aren’t worried?

Well maybe these people are all having exactly the same worries as you, but just like me they are not likely to strike up a conversation about it because they can’t think of how to even tackle the issues. It is easy to start conversations about the weather because you will probably agree with the person sitting next to you that it is sunny or cold or raining. It is an event which you have all witnessed or probably been out in at some point in the day. However, starting a conversation about the changes that people need to make, or ideas of different methods of saving energy often lead to conflicting views and therefore are not discussed. People will just sit on the tube every day on their way to work, and in a way ignore the world around them even though they are reading about it right in front of you.
Once I am at work, I think about the money that I am now earning. I think great I am here now, only eight more hours to go then I can leave and get back on the tube with everyone else. I do not particularly enjoy my job and it is not what I really want to be doing with my life. However, I do not count down the hours in the day, I just add up in the head the amount of money that will be going into my back account at the end of the month. The job that I am completing is not a part of my dream and I do not believe that it is the role that I am on the world to do. However, I require the money that I earn from my job to allow me to continue working down the career path that I do want to pursue. Again I think back to the tiny cells breaking down the detritus. I really want to get to the stage where I am the tree, taking in carbon dioxide and expelling oxygen. Or in real terms I am removing the poison in our ecosystem and expelling essential components that others need to be able to survive and excel. However, to get to this stage I need to complete many other jobs and learn how the whole system works.

I think of a job as a means to succeed in your personal role in society. The job that each person decides to do is their own decision. It is completely controlled by the person. However, many people such as myself are paid to do jobs that they don’t want to do. A job does not define you as a person it is merely a method to making money which everyone requires to survive. Jobs can be changed as long as the person is willing to look for change. But change is a word which people associate with fear.

While on my lunch break the topic of conversation normally goes along the lines of ‘I really don’t like doing this job’, ‘I wish I could do something else’, ‘I am so bored of doing the same thing everyday’. Yet these people and myself will continue to work in this job, some will work the same job for many years even though they don’t want to. This conversation often leads to people feeling down, and moaning about their situation. But there really is no reason to complain or moan. I mean you have a job, you are earning money and you know that this job doesn’t suite you. You are now in the perfect position to be earning money, while you can be looking for a new opportunity which you may enjoy more that this one. This job clearly is not the role that these people should have in society. But I see this as a positive, because at least there is the realisation that this role doesn’t suite them. Which means it should be easier to find what their role is as they have now crossed one job off the list of the thousands of different careers that are available to people. Changing your job should be seen as an exciting opportunity, not something to fear. After lunch, everyone goes back to the rest of their day continuing with the job which they claim to find boring and don’t want to be doing.