As a nurse, I work 8 hours a day and right before that I sleep for 8 hours. After work I focus on housekeeping. Due to my full-time job I don't have enough time for hobbies like reading and knitting and taking walks. However, the work as a nurse gives me a good feeling; I know that I chose the right job - I'm helping a lot of people. When I ask myself which structures I could change to have more free time, it often comes down to reducing my working-hours. It would give me more time with my husband and friends and would be better for my own health, since my daily structures tend to create stress. To deal with that, I like to have small rituals, like a fresh glass of orange juice, a good coffee, doing sport, having a good nutrition intake and cuddling my cat. The time that I spent with my husband is also quality-time that helps me to reduce stress and feel good.
I feel like a lot of social workers do not get enough money, that has has to change. It would enable us to reduce our working hours and have a more balanced life overall. Moreover there are a few twists and tweaks that I would like to change in my daily routines; like going to work by bus instead of using the car - but there is no bus that drives through our small town regularly. Another thing that bugs me, is that most healthy nutrition seems to be packed in plastic; there are not many options in the supermarkets in our town.
Anna, 52, Bösel, Niedersachsen
A structure describes an arrangement or an arrangement of different elements that are interdependent. Every person is surrounded by structures, be it at home the everyday structure. In the morning the newspaper with coffee, work, lunch, work, end of work, coffee, clean up-clean up, cook dinner, daytime show, watch TV, go to bed.
And what do structures have to do with the environment and sustainability? When I shop, I shop according to a pattern that has been developed in my subconscious over the years. I look in the refrigerator what is missing. The structure is this; I buy what I always want to have in the fridge, tomatoes peppers, avocado, cucumbers, eggs , milk butter, cold cuts. In the supermarket around the corner there is everything, no matter where from, how packaged, no matter what manufacturing processes (conditions) behind it. I could change my structure, inform myself which products are climate neutral and not packed (cucumbers are often packed individually), buy meat, eggs and milk regionally, and when it is not available regionally, I would simply not buy it. Avocados are healthy and delicious, but where do they come from? Strawberry time, asparagus time, plums, is it not enough for us to buy regionally when they are in season? In the past, the structure of many self-supporters was to grow vegetables and fruits, then to preserve them for a year, freeze, or store them in the cellar (potatoes). And then there was also only that. The structure that we have today in our heads, include all kinds of vegetables and fruits that exist in the whole world, and which are also in all recipe books that we want to have. We don't think about whether they are sustainable, where they are produced, what their eco-balance is, and what we could buy as an alternative.
Bernhard, 55, Warendorf
Without structure a person can not live. As a wheelchair user after a stroke with hemiplegia, all the usual everyday structures such as going to work, shopping, free time for hobbies or the like were no longer there. I had to relearn many structures and must learn them again! Meanwhile, the daily routine works again with support (washing, dressing, breakfast, laundry, shopping, etc.). My current recurring daily routines (daily structure) are getting up in the morning, having breakfast, therapy (Ergo or Physio), lunch, a walk with my friend, knitting, dinner and then going to bed. This daily routine helps me get through each day and not just lie in bed. I like to go to the weekly market 1 time a week with my husband and buy sustainable seasonal food for us. I also try to buy everything else that we need in our village and try not go to the city by car if possible. We bought our electrical appliances locally. We make sure that we buy high quality appliances that can be repaired if they are broken, so that we don't pollute the environment with scrap metal, plastic and synthetic materials. Also for my knitting hobby I like to buy high quality wool, pure virgin or cotton and not with polyamide (technical plastic) or polyacrylic (plastic fiber).
Stefanie, 54, Everswinkel, Nordrhein-Westfalen