Often the beliefs we hold have become so familiar to us that we don’t ever take the time to consider them closely. This exercise is an opportunity to take a closer look at some of the beliefs we hold with relation to sustainability.
1. List 3 beliefs you have with regard to sustainability and/or the environment eg. “we must reduce our emphasis on economic growth in order to preserve the environment” or “humans are contributing to global warming”.
2. For each belief, ask the following questions
> Where did that belief come from? Childhood? Something you read? Friends?
> When I hear evidence which is contrary to that belief, what is my initial reaction?
> What causes me to accept some evidence related to this belief, but not others?
> How does this belief influence my behaviour.
3. Feel free to have a good examination of these and other beliefs. If you find they are not working for you, you may wish to change them – they are yours after all!
If you work as part of a team, you may wish to complete this exercise together and focus on beliefs you share as a group.
This exercise was taken from the Awake newsletter. Awake provides psychology-based tools and services which support organisations and communities to develop a culture of sustainability.
Visit www.awake.com.au for more information.