NB: due to our own lucky circumstances, some parts of this page might sound patronising to people in need, or experiencing oppression of any kind. This is not our intention, and most of what we write can be adapted to different levels of wealth and privilege.
Question anything we buy: is the object I’m buying designed to become or produce waste? How, where, in what conditions is it produced (ideally, for the whole supply chain, as far back as you can find out)? Do I really need it? Is it an object that supports life on Earth or not? For a new relationship with objects and the resources used to make them, see among other ideas, the 7Rs (https://www.facebook.com/NovalisUbuntu/photos/a.10150352690048361/10156628911698361/?type=3&theater ) and the Zero Waste community worldwide.
Try, unless you are in a difficult situation due to health or economic need, to eliminate the use of plastic and disposables, of any material: there are alternatives to pretty much everything; they might not be what we like, or we might have to be creative or even work with others (ask for a lend, for example), but it is possible.
Create areas of survival: adopt a bit of land and regenerate it (www.wearetheark.org, for example), so it can support all life forms; support the creation of resilient communities: places that produce food and energy enough for small groups, with clean water and inland. If there are no catastrophic events in the end, all the better: these communities can work as teaching and learning areas and practical examples of life in harmony with the planet.
Directly support local food producers that operate in harmony with the land using regenerative techniques (beyond organic), and all forms of conservation and improvement of biodiversity, to drastically reduce the mass extinction happening right now, vastly ignored.
Eat foods from the lower levels of the food chain, local and seasonal.
Plant, and plant some more: trees and shrubs, anywhere you can, any time you can. Healthy foliage in large quantities is vital for survival.
Learn how to grow something, even if it is just herbs, to become familiar with the cycles and needs of plants and, as a consequence, all life on Earth.
Learn techniques and ways to live less intensively: actions like small self-production of food, clothes, energy etc. ideally reusing existing materials, protection of bacterial cultures (yogurts, etc.), rediscovery and modernisation of old life styles, survival outside urban and cultivated environments, reduction of (built) living spaces, sharing of resources and tools (tool libraries, good neighbourhood practices, etc.).
Try to switch some energy-dependent activities to off-grid alternatives: maybe wash something by hand, using very little or no soap; or get solar chargers and build solar ovens, just to name a few examples.
Train in essentiality and doing without the excess (the art of making do): in case of necessity we will then not be in so much shock as to make us helpless. Try to live on local, seasonal food, or even try to fast to see how we react; try electronic fasts regularly; reflect on what, among the many things we own (if we’re in such position), is really essential to help us live.
Learn how to heal using plants and remedies that are easily accessible where we are: this sounds controversial in this moment in time, but in case of total meltdown we will not have medicines available. It would be useful to learn how to look after our bodies, knowing how they works and their basic needs (movement, diet, chemical balance etc.). On top of this, it is very useful to know how common illnesses progress and how really dangerous the various phases can be, when medicines are not there, so we can intervene in such a situation.
Talk and share fears, anxieties, but also solutions and resources to achieve a different balance: community is essential to any survival. Practice gratitude too, as it makes it easier to face problems big and small.
Be curious and questioning, research: it is very likely that the real solutions will not come from the current way of thinking, that there are things out there we cannot even begin to imagine (free, totally clean energy? Food production in inhospitable areas without chemical additives? Technology without radiation? New applications of psychoneuroimmunology? These are very few of the ideas that look unfeasible now, but that we’d love to see becoming real) so we will need to keep imagining radically different, seemingly insane dreams to find realistic solutions.
There is of course much, much more: the world and the web are full of ideas and solutions, some more viable than others (one example among many: www.drawdown.org,). There are communities already living off grid and in harmony with the planet that could teach us what the next steps might be. If you feel like it’s your responsibility to act, the time is now.
And always, love more than you fear death (Jem Bendell)