Day 70: My Recycling-for-Change Thing

For several years now, every one or two weeks I have brought our recyclable cans and bottles to a nearby recycling center.  While the center is about eight miles away, it has worked out because I have a weekly vocal lesson in the same neighborhood.  I use the proceeds from this endeavor (usually measuring in quarters and a few dollar bills) to dry our clothes (another mundane routine that I don’t mind, and also wrote about here).

I think the most I have gotten from one recycling trip is about $4.50.   Sometimes I feel moderately embarrassed by my small offerings, compared to other customers with their bins filled to the brim (actually, I also feel a little embarrassed talking about it here).   Nonetheless, there is always something kind of fun, even relaxing, about the process.   I like the idea of materials getting repurposed and re-used, and being used in a way that is environmentally friendly.   I often find myself distressed at having to throw away plastic packaging, so doing all the recycling that I can is very satisfying.

And even if it sounds silly, it’s nice to get paid.  This goes back to when I was a child, when recycling cans was a way I learned that I could reliably and easily make money.  I guess it hasn’t lost that appeal: there’s a simple, elegant, predictable effortlessness about bring things to the recycling center for a bit of change.  I figure, if it feels good, then why not?

In case you haven’t realized already, I really believe in the benefit of doing things, no matter how small or simple they seem, that are enjoyable.  It doesn’t matter what the “pay off” is.  It’s about whether it’s satisfying to you.  It reminds me of the scene in American Beauty when Lester Burnham quits his corporate job to work at the nearby fast food hamburger joint like he did as a teenager (and probably for 1/10th the pay).  His wife questions his choice, and he says, “I have a job, thank you very much!”

My satisfaction in life is becoming all-important.  That’s why I write about weird things like going to the laundromat, and trees, and now recycling cans and bottles.  These topics are easy for me to feel good about!  It’s all about focus.  If you fill your mind with thoughts that feel good, no matter the subject, you are going to be attracting more things that feel good, because you will be in a good mood and it follows that will attract more good things.  Try it out, I promise you, it will work!

And now a few final thoughts on the subject from my good friend, Ye Olde Higher Self:

Chris is completely on the mark with his suggestion of finding things that feel good.  The Universe doesn’t care what you are thinking about.  It cares how you are feeling as you are thinking about it.  If you are happy, and putting of a good vibration of love, alignment, and peace, you will attract that back to you… no matter the topic.  It is as if life works in waves (or networks or webs) of vibrationally-related thoughts… it is not the “stuff” of life itself, but the vibration that matters.  If you are sending out a signal, or a wave, to the world that is filled with positive-feeling vibration, that is what you will attract back to you. 

Think about it this way: If you meet someone you consider a positive person, do they seem to be ONLY about one subject?  Sure, there are probably people who are, but generally, do you agree that if you think someone is positive, you generally think that no matter what they talk about or think about, they will put a positive spin on it?  Will they tend to have a “glass is half full” type attitude no matter what?  That person is choosing to come from a positive-feeling place in all that they do, regardless of  “what” they are thinking about.  Does that make sense?  Likewise, your best friend does not become a different person if they are riding a bus versus riding a Jaguar (although these two experiences may trigger very different feelings for them).  Who they are being is not inherently “about” any one subject, it is about who they are being, which will tend to have a certain feel to it no matter what they are doing.

The bottom line is, choose thoughts that feel good… no matter where they come from!  If thinking about sea shells makes you happy, think about sea shells!  If thinking about Shell Gasoline makes you happy… well do that!  (We realize that could be a controversial topic, especially for people like Chris who are sensitive to topics like pollution and environmental damage, as he alluded to before… we are using that as an example because there are people who can think about that topic and feel tremendous, and that feeling state is what is important here). 

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