Social Action

Helping Handful – An Easy New Years Resolution

How about a new years resolution to clean up our planet? Will you pick up a helping handful to kick off this new calendar year?  Will you commit to picking up a helping handful once a week?

In 2019 I encourage you to value our oceans, parks, rivers and mountains over the convenience of single use plastics and plastic packaging that can’t be recycled and isn’t biodegradable.

 Here are a few of my recent helping handfuls during my pollution patrol. I hope this inspires you to pick up trash, consume less, and think twice about how we treat nature. Remember, we are part of nature, not apart from nature.

If you really want to make a difference, commit to reducing your waste footprint. Choose to not buy food and products packaged in plastic or aluminum. You can go all in or start with replacing a few plastic packaged items in your shopping list with glass or paper packaging.

You can support my pollution patrol project on Ko-fi.com/loviedo.Have you picked up pollution in your neighborhood? I’d love to hear about it. Leave a comment.


I’m an artist and writer with a focus on art therapy. If you would like to support my heart work, please consider becoming a monthly patron on Patreon.com/Loviedo. For $1 a month*, you can fund programs like my D.I.Y. Therapy: Healing Depression E-course, my monthly “Radical” e-zine and other free creative healing projects, like “Cultivating Radical Self-Love: A Collaboration of Healers, Artists & Writers“.

Social Action

Helping Handfuls for Thanksgiving

Tired of all the trash? Join me on pollution patrol and pick up a helping handful. I pick up trash daily when I walk to work, to the park, the the grocery store. It’s never ending. I sure could use some help. Will you pick up a helping handful this Thanksgiving?

 Here are a few of my recent helping handfuls during my pollution patrol. I hope this inspires you to pick up trash, consume less, and think twice about how we treat nature. Remember, we are part of nature, not apart from nature.

You can support my pollution patrol project on Ko-fi.com/loviedo.

Have you picked up pollution in your neighborhood?

Social Action

It Starts With Trash

 Not being able to walk anywhere without seeing litter causes a great sadness to well up inside of me. It’s a small, but weighted sign of how humanity continues to disrespect our ecosystem; the ecosystem that feeds and waters us; the ecosystem that gives us a home. It’s a sign of the disregard we give to other life, both the “savage” animals we domesticated and hunt, and our own species. It is a metaphor to how we treat women’s bodies as things that we use, step on, and step over on our way to consumer pleasure. I could go on and on about all the litter and consumption metaphors for selfishness and hate that terrorize our world, but do I really need to?

When I pick up trash it feels good, but it’s also a painful reminder of all that is sick in our world. Is there even a reason to hope?  Most days I think not…. And you thought this was just another post about environmental pollution.

Who else feels  walks through their neighborhood picking up litter?

 

P.S. Next week I will be starting a 30 day self-care challenge so be sure to subscribe to my blog to join!


I’m an artist and writer with a focus on art therapy. If you would like to support my heart work, please consider becoming a monthly patron on Patreon.com/Loviedo. For $1 a month*, you can fund programs like my D.I.Y. Therapy: Healing Depression E-course, my monthly “Radical” e-zine and other creative healing projects, like “Cultivating Radical Self-Love: A Collaboration of Healers, Artists & Writers“.

*You can also receive art in the mail for only $12 a month.

Empowering Discussions, Social Action

The Environment of Racism, Stereotypes and Fear

I used to enjoy picking up litter because I was doing something so great for our environment; picking up trash so it could go in its place. Then I learned that the litter is the result of a deeper problem. The real problem is how we produce stuff and our addiction to having things. Our consumer mentality is so selfish we don’t seem to notice or care that all the stuff and packaging we buy is the reason why we have trash. All the cheap plastic stuff we buy every week for fun or retail therapy results in trash. Every time we buy a bottled drink, coffee to go, or pre-washed veggies in plastic containers we are choosing pollution. Every time we buy something mass-produced in a factory which inevitably creates waste we are creating trash.

 Now I pack snacks in reusable bags or containers and bring a water bottle. When I do get a drink to go I choose a drink that can be in a paper cup because unlike plastic the paper cup will actually degrade. Often I bring the cup home and use it repeatedly until I can recycle it. I bring my own produce bags to the store and choose fruits and vegetables that are package free. More and more of what I buy is in bulk and reusable bags. I also stopped the unhealthy habit of retail therapy which was much harder and rooted more in the decision to get out of debt than environmental reasons. When shopping for goods I first look at thrift stores and my local Buy Nothing Group. My monthly trash bin is a lot lighter these days, but what about non material consumption?

 If we want to get rid of the litter we need to start with the root of the problem and stop creating so much trash. It’s a lot like racism. We need to pull out the root of hate, which is fear, to end racism. Lately I have begun to look at my own fears in the forms of stereotypes.

I used to consume a lot of media and noticed the harmful stereotypes back in High School watching “girl power” tv shows where women had to look sexy if they wanted to be the hero, good girls were submissive and bad girls were rebels. If the show was “progressive” enough to have Black, Mexican, Asian or Native American characters they were usually the bad girls or the poor girls that needed to be saved by the white protagonist.

Then I noticed in movies how often thugs, criminals and villains were almost always Black drug dealers, Mexican car thieves, Asian gangsters, abusive Indian husbands, drunk Native Americans or all rolled into one terrible person and not coincidentally the only token non-white. Just recently I realized how “Trans” people were often portrayed as sick twisted individuals who wanted to dress up as their opposite gender to molest children or become serial killers.

Why are humans inclined to be so afraid of what is different? Why do we hold so many prejudices against those who are different? Why does it take so long to realize we are holding onto fear?

I admit to falling for these stereotypes. I used to cross the street if I saw a group of men hanging out because I assumed they were dangerous. Unless they were standing around in suits they must be up to no good.  I would avoid eye contact with anyone dressed in drag because for some reason I felt uncomfortable around them. It wasn’t until a few year ago when I started examining my ideas about people was I able to see how these media controlled images were creating a fear of those who are different in my mind.

Growing up in a diverse family of different colors and accepting of different sexual orientations I often felt immune to such fears, but I was wrong. Even I held unrealized prejudices. I have to check myself all the time now to understand the reason someone makes me uncomfortable. Is it because of societal expectations or my intuition? Sometimes it is my intuition telling me to be aware, but more and more I comprehend that they are not making me uncomfortable, but I’m projecting fear onto them.

Throw in some white privilege and more than likely I make them uncomfortable based on their own fears. In the racist, violent environment that is America their fears are much more justified and much more real than mine.

These days I’m less likely to cross the street and more inclined to smile and nod or say a simple “Hello”. I refuse to live in fear based on a stereotype.

So what kind of litter are you producing? What fears of those who are different do you hold? Analyze those fears, think about what you consume, both material and through your thoughts. Check yourself.

My inspiration for this post can be found on one of my favorite blogs: http://www.ototsy.com/2015-is-the-new-60s

Ready to stop the racism that litters our streets? Get involved with groups like the Coalition Against Police Violence, thecapv.org or Af3irm, http://www.af3irm.org/af3irm.

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 Want ideas for a healthy lifestyle free of depression? Read my other D.I.Y. Therapy posts.

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Empowering Discussions, Social Action

An Inside Look: The Real Sweatshops of Cambodia

Individual empowerment requires taking action to make the world a healthier place for others, not just ourselves!

Fashion bloggers in the Netherlands were given the chance to see where their clothing originates by working in sweatshops. Check it out:  Examiner.com/article/reality-tv-show-sends-fashion-bloggers-to-work-sweatshop

Do you LOVE fashion, but dislike the unsustainable fashion industry? I do. Expressing ourselves with fashion is a fun and healthy way to enjoy life. But the fashion industry is all about appearances, not expression and that’s unhealthy. This is one of many reasons why I didn’t follow through with a career in fashion. Mass produced fashion is an industry that is unhealthy, unsustainable and basically pointless. As someone who used to love shopping for sales so I could have trendy clothes I no longer want any part of it. I hardly shop at all these days. I prefer to buy second-hand or sustainable made clothing when it’s affordable.

These days I spend more money on food than “necessities” and shiny things. Even then I can’t just go into a 99 cent store and buy some food like product full of artificial flavors and sugar. I want real ingredients, not a chemical-based flavor of those ingredients. Food and worker justice is very important to me and it should be important to you!

Nobody deserves to grow up with their only career options WORKING in dangerous conditions for a few dollars a day. Learn more at these links:

Farmworkerjustice.org

Workersjustice.org

Everybody should be concerned with where their FOOD comes from and how it’s produced. Learn more at these links:

Comfoodjustice.org/policy

Seattleglobaljustice.org/food-justice

You are the change, what are you waiting for?

 

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Fight.Back.New.Kindle.CoverPreview this book on Amazon.com

….

word art book, affirmations book
Available at Bookemon.com

Read this book before you buy at Bookemon.com/book-profile/word-art-and-affirmations/153646

….

feminist writers, learn about feminism, teaching girls feminism, Fierce, Generation of female empowerment
Get your copy at Amazon.com

Find this and more empowering books at Amazon.com/Leah-Oviedo/e/B007LMUEJ2

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Empowering Discussions, Social Action

Yes It Still Exists: How To Lessen Racism, Prejudice, Stereotypes and Hate

Individual empowerment involves taking time to listen to others and realize that yes racism still exists. Prejudice, hate and stereotypes are all still experienced by a large percentage of the population. One major way we can end these rootless fears is forcing others to see that it is wrong and hear so from a diverse representation of voices.

I know for myself growing up in such a mixed family gave me an early lesson that prejudice is not only wrong, but if you’re surrounded by people who are different you can easily learn that equality isn’t just an idea, it’s a fact. As history shows us, the more we talk about issues and speak up to change hate, the less hate there will be. We just have to keep ensuring that all vices are heard and hear loudly!

If more perspectives were shown from various groups who have struggled and contributed to help shape America, things would be different. Generations to come would be more accepting and compassionate towards the races, religions, gender, and sexual preferences. We wouldn’t delete the word “racism” out of our vocabulary but we would be able to stop using it. Racism will eventually a word in the history textbook of how things used to be and not how things still are. We first have to teach the whole truth and not leave out information that will change the story.”continue reading at Living274.wordpress.com/2015/02/28/does-racism-still-exist

You are the change, what are you waiting for?

 

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Fight.Back.New.Kindle.CoverPreview this book on Amazon.com

….

word art book, affirmations book
Available at Bookemon.com

Read this book before you buy at Bookemon.com/book-profile/word-art-and-affirmations/153646

….

feminist writers, learn about feminism, teaching girls feminism, Fierce, Generation of female empowerment
Get your copy at Amazon.com

Find this and more empowering books at Amazon.com/Leah-Oviedo/e/B007LMUEJ2

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Empowering Discussions, Social Action

Women and Peace: Gloria Steinem to Join Christine Ahn as Women Walking for Peace in Korea.

Peace won’t just happen, we have to commit to change and diligently work for it.

On May 24, 2015, 30 international women peacemakers from around the world will walk with Korean women, North and South, to call for an end to the Korean War and for a new beginning for a reunified Korea. Along with Gloria Steinem, our delegation includes Nobel peace laureates Mairead Maguire from Ireland and Leymah Gbowee from Liberia, Patricia Guerrero from Colombia, former U.S. Army Colonel Ann Wright, Code Pink co-founder Medea Benjamin, and so many more courageous women peacemakers. We will listen to Korean women about how war and militarism impacts their families, lives, and dreams and hold international peace symposiums in Pyongyang and Seoul where we can share our experiences and ideas of mobilizing women to bring an end to the danger of violent conflict. Our hope, as a symbolic act of peace, is to cross the 2-mile-wide DMZ that separates millions of Korean families and bring an end to the state of war in Korea.” continue reading at Riseuptimes.org/2015/03/18/christine-ahn-korea-women-walk-for-peace-across-the-de-militarized-zone

You are the change! What are you waiting for?

 

*If you like this blog share it…

 

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Fight.Back.New.Kindle.CoverPreview this book on Amazon.com

….

word art book, affirmations book
Available at Bookemon.com

Read this book before you buy at Bookemon.com/book-profile/word-art-and-affirmations/153646

….

feminist writers, learn about feminism, teaching girls feminism, Fierce, Generation of female empowerment
Get your copy at Amazon.com

Find this and more empowering books at Amazon.com/Leah-Oviedo/e/B007LMUEJ2

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