According to a definition on Wikipedia, Critical Mass is a sociodynamic term to describe the existence of sufficient momentum in a social system such that the momentum becomes self-sustaining and fuels further growth. A similar effect is the Hundredth-Monkey Effect. This is defined as a phenomenon in which a learned behaviour spreads instantaneously from one group of monkeys to all related monkeys once a critical number is reached.
For example, I can make a positive impact by adopting a green lifestyle for my family and for my cat, Furball. However, the benefits are magnified if I can reach people through Green Little Cat and inspire many more people to make greener choices. If each of these people then influences someone else and this pattern continues, the positive impact increases exponentially. At some point, the sphere of influence reaches a critical mass and the hundredth-monkey effect kicks in and EVERYONE adopts greener practices. This is when world-changing shifts happen and we will all benefit from a healthier and greener planet.
Green is definitely in the mainstream consciousness now, but it’s new to a lot of people. There’s also a lot of greenwashing out there and if someone is new to the green movement, it can be overwhelming to figure out what’s the most eco-friendly option. Education and information is the solution. Share your knowledge and experiences to inspire friends, family and acquaintences to go green. Open a dialogue, even with strangers. Look for opportunities to encourage people to go green through simple changes. It’s really easy to do.
For example, I put together a green gift pack to give to the attending nurses at the hospital where I gave birth. The gift pack consisted of:
- The Sheryl Crow-designed reusable tote bag made from 80% post-consumer recycled plastic bottles from Whole Foods – I figure nurses will find them handy for taking stuff to work or running errands.
- A reusable and recyclable lunch bag, also from Whole Foods – Hospital staff can use the bag to pack their lunch of lunch for their kids.
- A reusable spray bottle and concentrate package of eco-friendly wowgreen Fabric Pre-Wash – I’m guessing that nurses (or parents in general) encounter more opportunities than the average person to remove food, blood, bodily fluids, etc. from their clothes.
- A handwritten note expressing my appreciation and asking them to help leave a greener planet for our children. Plus a tasty truffle to sweeten the message!
I wanted to make a nice gesture and also encourage people to consider green options that they may not have known about. I also knew that a dialogue would be opened because the nurses would most likely talk to each other about the gift bag they had received.
With the power of the Internet, it’s unbelievably easy to reach others with ideas and information. If you care, please tell at least one friend with a cat about this blog. Let’s help green the planet one cat lover at a time :).
I’ve tried to make it as easy as possible. You can:
- Click the “Share” link at the end of every post to post it on your favourite social networking site.
- Email the post to a friend by clicking the “Share This” link.
- Join my Facebook fan page
- Join the Green Little Cat mailing list and forward the newsletter to a friend (the big green box in the right hand column)