Put your money where your mouth is - a 1930's era household idiom, which simply means to prove the truth of one's words by action, to demonstrate one's sincerity or integrity.
Similarly, it has been said that if you want to know what you care about, look at how you use your time and where you spend your money.
As many of us are on this journey of becoming more cognizant, intentional, and active about the life we are choosing to live, we must look to the way we utilize our greatest commodities in order to have a realistic view of who we are - not the version we'd like to be.
We start to run into issues, however, when this truth is not held in tension with the reality that we are people who are not simply action-based but we are also value-based. Meaning, you cannot truly judge a person simply based on their behavior, but for an honest understanding of one's life, you must also see their intentions.
As we hold these two matters in balance, let's look at who we are and what our place is.
Our inherent identity in our society and also globally is as a citizen. Our citizenship no longer only holds implications to our local communities, but to the larger global society as well. In this reality (hopefully) we are striving to become more concerned, thoughtful, and active citizens. How we choose to live out our citizenship may vary in endless ways but in our shared space, we together own this calling.
Our other reality is that we also interact in our society and globally as consumers. The way our world is organized has always been as producers and consumers. Many of us are constituents to a larger entity of producers, but on an individual basis we all participate as consumers. We are a transactional society and we are constantly in the motion of purchasing and it turns out that our buying of things actually affects our society even to a global scale.
The marriage of these two identities helps us to understand how we can leverage change in our spaces and in our interactions. We find the tension between behavior and values, in our attempt to become active citizens and conscious consumers.
So what does that look like?
Active citizenship has to become a part of our identity as people. It dictates our values as people who are not only concerned with what is going on in our communities locally and globally but also to take ownership as stakeholders.
Being conscious consumers is the interaction that takes place once our identities are understood as not only simply existing as members of society into being stakeholders of our communities. We began using our purchasing power to cast votes into the marketplace, one dollar at a time. Becoming aware of what the impacts and implications for the different products and services that we engage with everyday.
We can no longer afford to live as passive people. We are a people too powerful to be cheapened to mere existing. We were meant to flourish and thrive. We were made to live in communities that are also to flourish and thrive. We have to be more and live for more so that all communities in our world can pursue their fullest potentials. The reality is that we make a difference whether we know it or not. It's time to start knowing and choosing to make the right difference.
Throughout this blog, we are going to explore further how to become more thoughtful in the way we interact as consumers and also how to engage in our societies in powerful ways. It's in our discovery of how powerful we truly are as people that we can begin to instigate change.
*Be sure to look at the About page to learn more of the purpose of this blog and also the Resource page to find different companies in which we can change our buying habits.