Hello! Welcome to The Good Life Girl. I’m Evie Calder, a blogger, small business owner, tea addict and lover of all things natural and sustainable. Thank you for visiting my site and for taking the time to read my blog.
If there’s one thing I’ve learnt recently, it’s that we really all should listen to our mothers – or anyone else’s mother for that matter… They’ve been on this planet longer than us, and they have a lot of knowledge about the way things used to be done – when we didn’t rely on products packed full of chemicals in plastic packaging to be clean, when the closest thing to a best before date was a sniff test, and when make do and mend wasn’t just a slogan, but an everyday reality.
As a Transnational History graduate, I’m a big believer that in order to fully understand exactly how we got here as a society, to understand where we’re going as a society if nothing changes, and to learn vital lessons that we need to carry forward, we need to look the past for inspiration and clarity. The way we live today is drastically different to the world our grandparents, or even our parents, grew up in. And while of course we have made great progress in some areas, I also feel that at some point, something went slightly wrong. We started caring more about our new clothes and our gadgets more than we did each other, our families or the environment. We’re now so reliant on technology that going anywhere without our phones seems totally and utterly ridiculous, perhaps impossible. We’re also so bombarded by targeted advertising that we live in a bubble of convenience, and therefore impatience. In a world full of finite resources and a growing population, how will we ever be able to cater for future generations, especially in a world of infinite wants and needs? The answer, I believe, is to look to the past.
I was recently given a book about natural health and beauty written back in 1973. There’s a quote in the preface that I feel captures the essence of this blog (and my own beliefs) better than I can put into my own words. It reads;
“But if we all once marched like lemmings into the modern world, we are less innocent today. We have been alerted to the rape of our environment; we cough daily from air pollution; and we recoil in horror from hormone-injected and insecticide-ridden foods. Many of the synthetic substances we have casually used have been indicted as carcinogenic… No doubt many other chemical mistakes will be uncovered in future. We must therefore turn from the present and take a fresh look at the past. This can be exhilarating and fascinating, but must be done with common sense. We mustn’t of course discard everything new, for that would be ridiculous. We must be selective. We must retain useful technological aids, and essential scientific data, particularly on nutrition and preventative medicine, while at the same time rediscovering what was beneficial in the past.”
Bearing in mind that this was written over 45 years ago, when there was little evidence for climate change, or indeed a plastic pollution problem at all, I think it’s about time we all started listening.
Please don’t get me wrong – I absolutely love science and technology, I always have. But when I first started studying the environment at university back in 2010, I was introduced to idea that a lot of people believe that advances in technology mean we don’t have to worry too much about changing our behaviour to protect the environment; somebody with come up with something soon that solves our problems, meaning we don’t really have to change at all. Recently, scientists accidentally discovered a bacteria that eats plastic – but does this mean that the plastic problem is solved, and that we can carry on mindlessly using plastic bags to transport our goods from the shop till to the car and then to the fridge and straight in the bag of bags in the kitchen cupboard? In my opinion, absolutely not.
I have never felt that it was acceptable to simply rely on the fact that a new technology might come along and possibly solve all of our problems. I believe that there also needs to be a fundamental shift within society towards a slower, more balanced way of living, one that encourages us to return to the way we used to live – with the added benefit of carefully chosen technologies, where appropriate. I believe in a world of work-life balance – where veggies are loose, cyclists and Teslas live in harmony, and where we only buy items that are designed to last, and are totally biodegradable or recyclable after they’ve come to the end of their life. I also believe in a world where big brands and organisations help protect the environment, and give back to those who need the most help, and where those who are fortunate help those who are not. If this sounds like a world you can get on board with, and you’d like to make changes in your own life and are after some inspiration, then you’re in the right place. If you’d like to hear more from me, then go ahead and sign up to my mailing list below.
Just a side note – I’m not a huge fan of labels, and tend to just live by my own set of ethical principles (this is a totally judgement free zone). I try to live as simply, sustainably and ethically as possible. This blog exists to help provide you with advice, information and support you need to live your version of ‘The Good Life’. But believe me, I’m on a journey too, and I am not perfect – I’m not here to preach, but to share lessons, tips and knowledge. And if I help you, then that’s fantastic. But if there are things you can teach me, that’s even better – I’d absolutely love to hear from you.