Sustainable You

Sustainability and the Built Environment

4900/6900: Wk 2 Are you Present?

Response due at the beginning of class on 1/19.

1. Please take the Life Expectancy Calculator to see how long you are expected to live based on your current lifestyle and behaviors. You’ll need a few minutes to fill this quiz out, it asks a lot of questions in different parts of your life.

2. Tell us your expected age?

3. Are you happy or disappointed with expected age?

4. Were there any suggestions that might help you increase your expected age that you would consider changing?

5. In your own words, what does finding out your life expectancy outcome have anything to do with “Sustainability and the Built Environment”?

6. Pick one day this week to track your “awareness” levels during your daily routine (preferable that you do a M-F day and not a weekend day). The instruction for this activity are located on the attachment. You will see I attached the same document as a both a PDF and Word Doc. For those of you that can access the word doc., then you can just add your answers to the word doc which may be easier for you. The PDF will anyone with any computer to open the file without problem but you can not edit a PDF. Please answer 7-8 using the “comment” feature on the website, but submit a print copy of the “How Present Are You Worksheet” in the beginning of class on 1/19.

WORKSHEET BELOW:

how-present-are-you-worksheet_one-day_PDF

how-present-are-you-worksheet_one-day_Word Doc

7. Why do you think I have asked you to look at your daily awareness and presence in a class about sustainable living?

8. Do you think your daily awareness/present abilities are healthy for you or would like to make some changes?

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Filed under: Sustainable Design

20 Responses

  1. Megan Greene says:

    1. N/A (Took the Life Expectancy Calculator)
    2. My expected age is 96.
    3. I am extremely happy with my expected age. In this day and age, there are so many diseases and illnesses that can impact the body in negative ways. However, it is possible to overcome these diseases with hard work and dedication. Some people are already considered elderly when they become diagnosed with a sickness such as cancer that they just believe they are going to die and don’t see any point in living anymore. I always admired my great grandmother. She went through treatment and eventually was became a survivor of breast cancer. She lived to be 101 years old and will definitely be an inspiration if I ever become diagnosed with a life-threatening disease.
    4. I was given several suggestions to help me increase my life expectancy. I never knew that aspirin was necessarily helpful to the body, but apparently taking an aspirin every day can help you to escape a heart attack or stroke and could also add another year to your life. My dentist has reminded me time and time again to floss my teeth. I have began flossing several days a week, but not everyday. In order to avoid gum disease I need to floss everyday. I know that exercise is extremely important and helps prevent a vast variety of health problems. Since I do not have a car in Athens, it is inconvenient and time consuming to make a trip to Ramsey to work out. However, in order to prevent weight gain from the unhealthy meals at the dining hall and future diseases I definitely need to make more of an attempt to exercise. If I just exercised almost every day for 30 minutes, I could add 5 years to my life expectancy. I think most anyone would agree that giving up 30 minutes everyday is worth living an extra 5 years. Also, I should be more attentive when I attend my yearly physicals at my doctor’s office. When the doctor reads my blood pressure, I don’t even know if the numbers she is saying are good or bad, so that makes it difficult for me to know if I need to make any improvements in my daily lifestyles.
    5. I believe that finding out my life expectancy has a lot to do with sustainability and the environment. If I do not learn what is wrong with my way of living, then it can have serious impacts on my future. If I do not make changes, I will not be able to survive for as long as I could. If people do not start living sustainably, their carelessness and unhealthy way of living will take a toll on the earth and the environment. Without education on sustainable living, people do not even know how their specific actions can severely and negatively affect our environment. Specifically, people need to recycle and conserve in order to preserve the earth’s resources and allow our environment to stay intact well into future generations.
    6. N/A (See How Present Are You Worksheet)
    7. I think that you have asked me to look at my daily awareness because I would have never realized how unaware I was at certain times during my day. It is so easy to get distracted with other people, technology, etc. when you are trying to stay focused. It takes hard work to avoid these distractions and stay on topic with what you are doing. So just like someone’s daily awareness, people who are not living sustainably may not even realize what they are doing that is hurting the environment. Sustainable living is not easy either. It takes effort and a serious time commitment if you are truly supportive of helping the world. For example, until I saw the video in class of all of the waste in the Pacific Ocean I had not thought about the impact of throwing away plastic bottles. However, now that I am aware of this I am conscious of my decisions and use a Brita to hold my water instead of plastic bottles.
    8. I think that my awareness of the future is healthy. I am a very good planner and like to get things done well in advance so that I do not have to worry. However, I think that I could definitely be more aware in the present time. Although my Tuesdays and Thursdays are very busy with classes, it is a small amount of time in perspective to my entire week. I need to make some changes on those days. Even though the classes are long, it will help in the long run to pay more attention to what my professor is saying throughout the entire class period. Then, I will not have to ask other people to repeat what my professor said or copy down notes that I missed by not paying attention.

  2. Katherine Holland says:

    1. N/A, took the Life Expectancy Calculator online.
    2. My expected age is 93.
    3. I am happy with my expected age from the Life Expectancy Calculator. 93 is considered old in my family. Most of my grandparents died in their 80’s, therefore; 93 would be a huge milestone. I pride myself in living a healthy lifestyle for the most part. I try to eat healthy foods and I exercise everyday. Of coarse no one can be perfect, but I do my best to be healthy each day. After looking through my feedback from my life expectancy calculator, I know there could be some more changes to my daily routine that would increase my longevity. For now I am going to continue regular exercise and a healthy diet and slowly make small changes for more long lasting accomplishments.
    4. There were some suggestions from my Life Expectancy Calculator that I would consider changing to increase my expected age. A big change for me would be wearing sunscreen regularly. Protecting my skin form UV rays suggested to add half a year to my life and decrease wrinkles, which is always a good thing! Along with wearing sunscreen, examining myself for cancer regularly could add a while year onto my life and is something I need to incorporate into my lifestyle. I am good about going to my annual check-ups at the doctor but bad about keeping up with my results. Keeping my documents and educating myself on the scoring system could add a total of about 2 years to my life. Now that I am older, I need to keep up with my health records to know where I stand each year. The last important suggestion for me to increase my longevity is flossing. I am aware of the consequences of not flossing but once again need to make an effort to incorporate flossing into my daily routine. Since there is a link between inflammation of gum and heart disease, flossing regularly could add a while year onto my life according to my Life Expectancy Calculator.
    5. Finding out my life expectancy outcome has a lot to do with sustainability and the built environment. The way IU choose to live my life today will in fact effect and have impacts on my future. Learning about the changes I can make to increase my life expectancy will not only change my daily habits, but it will also make me become a more sustainable person overall. Once again, becoming more sustainable and increasing my life expectancy has effect on my surroundings in the built environment. Not only will I make changes for increasing my own life expectancy, I will also make changes to increase the sustainability in the surrounding environment. The way I treat my body should become as important as the way I treat the environment to lengthen the life expectancy of the earth in the future.
    6. See the “how-present-are-you-worksheet” attachment.
    7. I think you have asked us to look at our daily awareness and presence in a class because it correlates with sustainable living. The way we go about taking care of ourselves and the choices we make on a daily basis are very similar to the way we treat the environment. If you think about your daily actions, routines and habits, they have great effect on both your mental and physical health. The way you treat your body is similar to the way you treat your environment. Practicing ways to increase your longevity and good heath are just as important as the habits you make to increase the longevity of the built environment.
    8. I think my daily awareness/present abilities are healthy for me. I am going to continue my healthy habits and daily exercises to better my future. Although I feel that I am on the right path, I know there are some changes I could make in my lifestyle for even greater results in the future. I am going to focus on making small changes that will be more long lasting and not just a trend.

  3. Katie Jones says:

    1. N/A
    2. My expected age is 93
    3. I was happy with my results. I have moderate anxiety and therefore thought that my expected age would be much lower. Also, my dad has Parkinson’s and my grandfather died from a heart attack at a young age and therefore thought that would play a bigger part into the overall calculation. In addition, I feel like everyday there is a new study about how the products we use on a daily basis can give us some type of cancer so I thought this would impact my expected age as well.
    4. I was given several different suggestions about how to increase my life expectancy. For one, I have anxiety disorder so if I were to find a better way of managing my stress I would be able to add 3 quarters of a year to my life. This doesn’t surprise me for I have been told this for much of my life. In order to improve my stress level, I could exercise more or start practicing yoga since both help me work on my breathing and also release endorphins into my system. Secondly, if I were to take an aspirin every evening I could add another year to my life. This actually surprised me when I was reading my results. I knew that aspirin helped pro-long life during a heart attack but had no idea that it should be taken on a regular basis. Thirdly, if I were to daily apply a moisturizer with a high SPF, I could increase my life span by a year. This is also something I have been told most of my life. For about a year and a half I went to the tanning bed on a semi-regular basis. I have now realized how idiotic this was and have been working ever since to turn back the signs of aging and religiously apply a SPF. Fourthly, if I were to cut back on sweats to 1-2 a week I would increase my life expectancy by half a year. Although I eat relatively healthy, I have a weak spot for sugared candy. If allowed, I could eat a whole bag of sour patch kids in one sitting. However, since nutrition and weight are a huge issue in the media, I have always known how bad this is for me. I need to practice better self-control and overtime this will hopefully improve my cravings. This goes hand in hand with the fifth suggestion to exercise more. Although I knew how important exercise was, I never knew that it could add that many years back to your life. I need to start walking to class instead of driving and focusing on productive workouts rather than just increasing my workout time.
    5. Figuring out your individual life expectancy age goes hand in hand with the issue of sustainability and the environment. We each need to know how we conduct our everyday lives and how the decisions we make today impact how we sustain our lives but also how we preserve the environment. If we aren’t living our most healthy lives or don’t care about our own life expectancy, then how can we ever fully care about the environment around us. Also, the environment directly relates to how long we are expected to live. Areas with lots of waste and air smog make the air we breathe toxic and therefore decrease our expected age. We have to remember that sustainability pertains to all areas of our life that work as one cohesive force.
    6. N/A
    7. Living a healthy and sustainable life isn’t necessarily easy. It requires a present to wake up every morning with the intent on making their lives and the lives of everything around them better. It is easy to throw trash on the ground or in the trash can, however to individually divide the waste takes an extra conscious effort. Therefore, we must be present and aware of everything around us in order to one live a happier life (which sustains our expected age), and two to understand and perform sustainability. It also takes planning and organization. We must be productive with our time and present in every moment. For example, it is easy to and convenient to just drive our class each day. However, if we were to plan our day accordingly, we could save gas and air fumes by either walking or riding our bike. We must look at and appreciate the green around us so we can be aware when someone tries to take advantage of it or destroy it.
    8. I think my awareness levels are somewhat healthy, but because of my anxiety, tend to live inside my head at times. I retreat in-wards and forget about the beauty and the creation that is happening around me. Although it sounds cliche, I wish I were more able to “live each moment as it were your last”, breathing in whatever is happening around you. I think I need to better control my stress level, and in particular concerning my school work, so that I may be a better person to the beings around me.

  4. Mary Alice Jasperse says:

    2. My expected age is 94. I’m very happy with this, but not sure how accurate…how can they know I will live until 94? Also, other comments show that many ages were predicted for 93/94, so maybe the calculator is meant to be encouraging. I do try very hard to be healthy–I think preventative care is usually much more effective than taking medicine for problems that could easily be avoided.
    3. The feedback was helpful–I can very easily start taking a low dose of aspirin, easy peasy. Usually I try to obtain the same aspirin effect with red wine (a bit more enjoyable), but I’m willing to by a bottle of aspirin the next time I’m at the store. I am supposed to work less (not really an option right now–taking too many hours), and drink less coffee. These two suggestions I’m choosing to ignore. I need to floss more, which I will try to do. I usually end up flossing more when I know I have a dentist appointment coming up. I had an appointment two weeks ago, so this was a friendly reminder to floss. It was recommended for me to increase my exercise to 4 or 5 days a week, which will be possible–I just have to figure out my school/gym schedule. I should set up a doctor’s appointment just to make sure my blood sugar/blood pressure are kosher. I should probably take multivitamins daily. I don’t eat much red meat, so I need to make sure my iron levels are healthy. I also need to wear sunscreen, which I will do in the summertime. I don’t lay in the tanning bed, so I tend to get more pale in the winter. If I wore sunscreen during the winter, I would probably be a ghost. Vanity rules–since I’m not a tanning bed gal, I excuse myself from the sunscreen rule in winter months. I’m a healthy eater, which probably helped my life expectancy. My coffee intake needs work though…
    4. As previously stated, I would consider aspirin, a multivitamin, increase exercise 1-2 additional days/week, flossing more, and setting up a doctor’s appointment to check my blood pressure/sugar. These are pretty routine improvements that don’t seem out of my league.
    5. For me, life expectancy has a ton to do with living sustainably. I think as a senior in college, I’m at a definitive point in my life. Now is when I establish routines and “norms” that I will continue to follow forever. For example, if I never think twice about walking to class or nagging myself to recycle or go to the gym, then these things will become second nature when they are no longer extremely convenient. Since the life expectancy calculator informed me that I would be living until 94, I need to make sure that I choose surroundings to make these next 72 years as healthy and enjoyable as possible. Unlike my grandparents, who will realistically have about 5 more years to worry about the environment and our health, I have decades. The ability to be informed is in my court–there may be another cancer-causing agent (such as smoking) that our generation needs to be wary of.
    6. (see worksheet)
    7. If we are not aware of what goes on in our daily lives or how the time passes, there is no possible way for us to look at every aspect of our day from a sustainable standpoint. Many times I buy a cup of coffee in a cardboard cup and absentmindedly throw it into the trash on the way to class. Since I have noticed this trend in my behavior, I now bring my own cup to have it refilled at the coffee stand. I get a discount and I don’t have to worry about throwing my cup away. And my coffee stays hot longer. Win win win. We must be aware of our actions, how our choices effect other actions, and how making simple preparations at the beginning of the day can improve these decisions. I want to figure out my schedule so that I can go directly to the gym from class, cutting out the need to drive. This is totally feasible, but if I forget my gym clothes I will be forced to make the extra (unnecessary) trip.
    8. I think I am present during most of my daily activities. The area of time I would like to improve on is the time of day when I get home from school and there’s a lull in the schedule. I am trying to counteract this lull with a spin class, so we’ll await success in this area. Other than this, I try to remain focused in class just so I don’t get stereotyped by teachers as “the girl who texts/is on the computer during class.” While this motivation may be different than a “stay focused for the sake of being focused” attitude, the objective is achieved.

  5. Adam Nowaczyk says:

    1. Please take the Life Expectancy Calculator to see how long you are expected to live based on your current lifestyle and behaviors. You’ll need a few minutes to fill this quiz out, it asks a lot of questions in different parts of your life.

    2. Tell us your expected age? 81

    3. Are you happy or disappointed with expected age? It seems about right. I could be doing a lot more, but I just have to get into the habit and routine of doing so. I’m certainly not happy.

    4. Were there any suggestions that might help you increase your expected age that you would consider changing? Since the new year began I’ve been trying to be very conscious of my eating choices as well as trying to exercise a lot more. I could add 20 years to my life just by eating better and exercise. It was the single biggest change I could make according to the calculator. They recommended taking aspirin daily too, which I might start doing.

    5. In your own words, what does finding out your life expectancy outcome have anything to do with “Sustainability and the Built Environment”?

    6. Pick one day this week to track your “awareness” levels during your daily routine (preferable that you do a M-F day and not a weekend day).

    7. Why do you think I have asked you to look at your daily awareness and presence in a class about sustainable living? Probably to make us aware of how habitual we are and how we do things that we may not even be conscious of. These habits can lead us to make decisions about how sustainable.

    8. Do you think your daily awareness/present abilities are healthy for you or would like to make some changes? I NEED to make some changes. As I’ve mentioned in a previous post, I’ve really been paying a lot more attention to what I’ve been eating since the new year began. I’ve also started incorporating more exercise into my daily routine.

  6. ashley Walker says:

    1. (calculated life expectancy)
    2. my expected age is 81.
    3. I’m very happy with this age. The reason being is because the women in my family especially on my mothers side have not lived past 50. The last woman to live past 50 on my mothers side was my great great great grandmother and she lived to be 71. I don’t necessarily think it was lifestyle factors that shortened there lives i think it is more or less the inevitable that happened. Even though I got such a good life expectancy age I’m still kind of worried about how old I will actually be when I pass.
    4. I could definitely eat more healthy. I could eat more fruits and vegetables and exercise more. I actually plan on making this change to get back into shape since I just had a baby and all. I also need to make this life change because I don’t feel as energized as I use to when I ran track. So I could definitely make that life change.
    5. My life expectancy outcome and the “Sustainability and the Built Environment” to me means finding a way to better sustain yourself and your life. It means what changes within yourself can you make today to better improve your chances of living longer and to “sustain” your body. In return making better changes to sustain yourself will in the long run help sustain the environment because now you are having less on a negative impact on the environment because you are taking care of yourself.
    6. (see worksheet)
    7. If we are not focused and aware of how we are living then we do not really know if we are living and leading a sustainable life. This exercise was a good one because it really made me sit back and think how often do I pick up my phone or how conscious am I really of how much water I use, or how much quality time I spend with my family. The more aware of your actions you are the more you can focus on making better decisions to become more sustainable.
    8. I feel like I could change some things. I feel like my mind is always on the go and my “to do list” is never ending that I am not in the present that my mind is always in the future. I think I could change that by taking a few hours out of the day to relax and to focus on what is going on in the now. Focus on the present and not so much on the future. The present is where most of your memories come from and realizing that I will definitely change to be in the present.

  7. Ari Strickland says:

    1. Please take the Life Expectancy Calculator to see how long you are expected to live based on your current lifestyle and behaviors. You’ll need a few minutes to fill this quiz out, it asks a lot of questions in different parts of your life.

    2. Tell us your expected age? 86

    3. Are you happy or disappointed with expected age? I’m happy with the number because i don’t want to be old and senile..i would rather live a short fantastic fulfulling life then a prolonged, strung out old one. I know i need to stop smoking and eat better though.

    4. Were there any suggestions that might help you increase your expected age that you would consider changing? Im probably going to cut down on some carbs. Chips and rice are my LIFE, i need to branch out a little.

    5. In your own words, what does finding out your life expectancy outcome have anything to do with “Sustainability and the Built Environment”? I feel like the more you care about what goes into your body, the more deliberately healthy your decisions will be. Buying better, natural things for you is a part of sustainability.

    6. Pick one day this week to track your “awareness” levels during your daily routine (preferable that you do a M-F day and not a weekend day).

    7. Why do you think I have asked you to look at your daily awareness and presence in a class about sustainable living?
    We need to draw more attention to our choices, and consciously choose the best option instead of going through the motions.

    8. Do you think your daily awareness/present abilities are healthy for you or would like to make some changes? i knoooow i need to be more aware. i make bad life choices too often, like speeding.

  8. Heather B. says:

    1. Life expectancy calculator.
    2. My expected age is 94.
    3. I am happy with the age for the most part, however I think the accuracy of the test is debatable at best. Certain questions like the one regarding how often you are around second-hand smoke, do not give enough options as answers since circumstances vary so heavily from one person to another. Also, I felt as if some of the questions were not worded too well, like those about red meat or sweets. Answer choices jumped from never to once or twice a week or day. I don’t eat those things ooften enough to warrant a once or twice a week average, but I definitely do eat them sometimes. I don’t know, I guess it’s nice to have a high number, but I don’t think I truly deserve it.
    4. I would love to live closer to family and manage my stress in a more productive, effective way. I do want to begin using more sunscreen, if nothing else but to prevent premature aging/wrinkles, and flossing would be beneficial in numerous ways. However, cutting caffeine from my life would be extremely difficult- it is how I make it through most days alive, and shortening my work hours, as nice as it would be, is just not possible when the job is entry-level.
    5. This exercise shows me that I can expect to live a much longer life than those of previous generations for various reasons; increased public health knowledge, advances in medical technology, and more. It also shows me that more and more humans are living longer and longer, needing more of our resources to last for a longer period. It also shows me that projections of various lands and resources running out or becoming very scarce years from now could happen while I am still alive. It is not just the next generation’s problem anymore, I could be facing these issues too.
    6. Daily awareness worksheet.
    7. I remember you saying something in class that practicing sustainability requires awareness everyday to be successful. This makes sense considering almost every one of our actions each day requires the use of one resource or another, so being aware of that and how to reduce our impact as much as possible will greatly help us move towards sustainable living.
    8. I would definitely like to make changes in my lifestyle, who wouldn’t? My daily routine is relatively healthy as is, but if I could be more present in everything I do each day, not only would I be capable of improving our environment, but the length and quality of my life as well.

  9. Brittany Biggers says:

    2. My expected age is 87.

    3. I am very happy with this age. It is actually higher than I thought it was going to be. Plus, I do not think I would really enjoy living past the age of 87 due to physical barriers.

    4. Although some suggestions like not drinking any caffeine do not seem very plausible to me as a college student, there are many tips that I would definitely do. For example, it suggests to take 81mg of aspirin everyday, wearing sunscreen everyday, and flossing daily.

    5. Life expectancy is important when thinking about “Sustainability and the Built Environment.” I believe this is true, because if one is trying to live a sustainable lifestyle, they need a time period to come up with a successful sustainability action plan. On the other hand, the “Built Environment” has a lot to do with what your life expectancy is, meaning a good, healthy environment will result in a good, healthy life expectancy. Therefore, by living sustainably in your built environment you can also be increasing your life expectancy.

    6. On worksheet.

    7. I think you asked us about our daily awareness and presence because they have a lot to deal with sustainability. Being aware of what you are doing at all times will make you notice all of the actions that are usually unconscious. By being more aware you are the ability to make more of an effort to consistently make sustainable choices.

    8. I feel that my daily awareness abilities are fairly healthy. For the most part I try to make educated and healthy choices on a daily basis. It would be beneficial to improve my daily awareness on some issues, such as making an effort to exercise more or taking aspirin every day. On the sustainability standpoint, I think I do a great job of being aware of the choices I make in an environmental sense.

  10. Clair McClure says:

    1. LIFE EXPECTANCY QUIZ

    2. Expected age: 92

    3. I’m very happy. I did not think my expected age would be this high. My initial thought was somewhere between 80 – 85.

    4. The main suggestions were losing excess weight and increasing my exercise regime from 3 days per week to 4 days per week. By making those two changes I would apparently add about 10 more years to my life expectancy. These two areas are particular things that I have actually begun working on recently so I suppose I am on the right track. There were other suggestions such as flossing my teeth more often and taking a daily calcium supplement. I can definitely see the benefits to both of these changes. I am not very fond of dairy products. I do not include very much milk or yogurt into my daily diet so it may be very beneficial to add a calcium supplement.

    5. I see the importance of what I am consuming, my daily routines and activities, as well as my medical history all part of being a healthy individual. While, I am still uncertain of the whole concept of sustainability, I can most definitely see the importance of becoming a sustainable, healthy individual. I believe the first important aspect of “Sustainability and the Built Environment” is to create a lifestyle of sustainable habits in my own personal life. I see the value of continuing healthy choices in my life such as incorporating more exercise, better eating habits, and being aware of what is happening with my health. If I cannot grasp the sustainability idea as a whole it may be beneficial to focus on how I can personally implement healthy choices in my life to become an overall sustainable individual.

    6. HOW PRESENT ARE YOU worksheet

    7. I think in conjunction with the life expectancy quiz thinking critically about how we spend our day is a step to creating a personal, sustainable life. In considering how I spend the moments of my day I see the times when I am not spending the day wisely. I am also aware of the moments I spend doing mindless activities out of habit or ease. We spoke in class about how living a sustainable life requires a level of constant thought about how we spend our time and the choices we make. This exercise of “how present are you” requires me to think critically about each moment of my day. If I want to implement sustainable practices in my life, especially since I have never thought about sustainability as it relates to my everyday choices, I have to start breaking down my choices, thoughts, and habits as they are presently. Then maybe I will be able to incorporate some sustainable changes even if they are small. For instance, I have been making sure to not through away glass beer bottles. This has also made me think about not throwing away any glass containers like ginger ale bottles, mason jars, etc. Maybe this is a small thought that will increase into a larger practice which may become an overall life change.

    8. I think I’m in the process of moving towards healthier habits. I’ve tried to incorporate more reading to stimulate my mind as opposed to just watching TV. When I’m in class I do attempt to stay engaged and not let myself be distracted. I also want to experience more growth in my partnership with my husband. I would like to be more conscious of the fact that I have to consider someone else in my decisions and daily life. It’s a change to my daily awareness but he’s worth it .

  11. Samantha Morton says:

    2.My Life expectancy is 83.
    3.Not the greatest. I honestly expected a little better than that but as I was answering the questions it became obvious to me what risks/ factors go into the calculation. I was tempted to lie a little, but I answered all the questions honestly.
    4.Certain things popped up like the nagging voice in the back of my head to cut down on the sweets, floss more, and exercise more. I read over the suggested changes and never realized that taking aspirin daily increases your life expectancy. I am guilty of tanning without sunscreen and I know that it ages you considerably. I want to slowly start integrate using sunscreen more, especially this summer since I’ll be outside in the sun for the majority of the day.
    5.Recognizing that we as a generation will still (hopefully) be living for the next sixty/seventy odd years means that the extreme climate changes scientists are warning us about WILL in fact affect us. We can’t rely on the thought process “oh, I won’t be alive when the ice caps melt, and natural disasters become common wheather conundrums. Additionally, with the increased life expectancy comes increased pressure on the environment. We are continuing to leave our footprint for decades longer, and possibly even beyond the grave.
    6. WORKSHEET.
    7. I think the first step to leading a sustainable lifestyle is being conscious. Conscious of every action we take, and how every action we take has an effect- be it negative or positive. While not all of the question directly pertained to environmental topics, the other non-related questions still helped us in the exercise of being aware. It was a holistic approach, which is after all what the definition of a lifestyle is. In order for us to live sustainably we have got to be conscious of every aspect of our day.
    8. Currently I would like to think I am making the most out of my days, but there is always room for improvement. I made a lengthy new years resolutions list with plenty of easy and super tough changes I want to ensue. Living in the present is definitely in my top ten.

  12. Melissa Worth says:

    2) 96-years-old

    3) I am happy with my expected age. My grandma is currently 96-years-old, and she appears to be very happy. However, I hope that if I do live to be that old, I will still be relatively independent. For example: my grandma is still able to walk on her own, cook her own food, etc.

    4) There are definitely a few things that I would consider doing to improve my life expectancy. For example: I plan on living closer to my family in the future, and I am already making a conscious effort to reduce the amount of sweets that I eat. Also, the website recommends that I reduce my sun exposure by wearing more sunscreen, but I’m hardly ever in the sun for extended periods of time. And while I think it’s a good idea to exercise more and to completely remove fast food from my diet, it’s not very practical for my lifestyle. This is something I may consider in the future though.

    5) I think that finding out my life expectancy relates to “Sustainability in the Built Environment” in a sense that the website offers small suggestions that we can do on a daily basis to improve our quality of life. I think that’s kind of the whole point of sustainability—making a choice to do what you can afford to do now to improve your life in the future. Also, while I don’t know much about sustainability in terms of my own health, that’s something that I’m hoping to explore a little bit more in this class. And I think it’ll be interesting to see how the two concepts overlap even more.

    7) I think you asked us to look at our daily awareness to help us to realize that becoming sustainable isn’t a small task; it’s something that, on some level, we need to always be conscious of. Because we live in a global world, we are easily distracted, and we often lose sight of what’s really important. When I’m presented with a daunting task, I can easily turn to facebook or my cell phone to escape. And beyond that, I just think that it’s really important, on a psychological level, to be emotionally present because living in the future/past can create a lot of stress.

    8) Overall, I think I’m pretty present. And if nothing else, I acknowledge when I am not as present as I could be. A lot of times, I see people walking around campus listening to their iPods, and I always wonder what they’re thinking or if they’re even paying attention to their surroundings. I make a conscious effort not to be one of those people; I try to enjoy my walks from one class to the next, but I have realized that my cell phone is a big distraction. I usually talk on the phone in between classes just out of habit—even when I don’t really have anything to say, and this is something that I definitely want to try to work on. Also, I used to take a lot of yoga classes, and that’s something I really want to do more of because it helps you to focus your energy & to become more aware of your own thoughts/emotions.

  13. Hannah Greenberg says:

    Blog 2

    2. My life expectancy is 98 years.

    3. I am pleased with my results from the life expectancy test. I would think with the toxins in today’s world that it would be much lower. I also get sick very often, so I assumed that would make it lower as well.

    4. As far as the suggestions for my stress level, I definitely would try to lower that. Not only would I gain a quarter of a year, but I believe I would be much more at ease and efficient in my everyday life. It mentioned that if I decreased my caffeine intake that I would gain around half a year back. To be honest, I do not think I will decrease this. I will definitely continue to wear sunscreen and floss. These are such simple tasks that would add time to my life. It seems silly not to do them. As far as nutrition goes, it says I need to consume more dairy. I have recognized this before and will do my best, however I really hate milk. My suggestions for medical improvement were simply going to the doctor. I go to the doctor regularly, I simply got these suggestions because I did not remember my results.

    5. I think it has a lot to do with it. By living in a sustainable environment, one’s quality of life improves. This includes your health, what you eat, the toxins around you, and much more. All of these factors, if improved, would increase my life expectancy.

    7. I think you asked us to do the worksheet because part of the reason people are not as sustainable as they could be is because they are not aware of their actions. By being more aware, we are more likely to notice the small changes we can make that will have a big difference in the long run. I also think we realize how easy these changes can be by tracking them.

    8. Yes, I do ( at least for some of them). I was somewhat disappointed with myself when I realized I didn’t notice or appreciate anything in nature today. That alone made me want to take a second everyday and appreciate the environment around me. Also, I want to be more “present” in activities I am doing. I think this will allow me to be better at the task I am doing.

  14. Kelsey Savell says:

    2. My expected age is 88.

    3. I’m happy with that. I wouldn’t want to outlive all of my friends or my children, and I feel like 88 is pretty old when compared to the average life expectancy today. If I took all the suggestions of the website, it predicts I would live until 110. That’s way too old for me.

    4. I don’t think I will take any of the website’s suggestions immediately, but probably sometime in my future. Quitting smoking would add 15 years to my life. That stat affected me a little bit. Taking an aspirin everyday was an interesting suggestion. I have never heard before that aspirin could be so health-enducing.

    5. Finding out my life expectancy encouraged me to open my eyes to the bigger picture, to think about how my living conditions will be many years from now. In doing so, I also thought about the children and grandchildren I will probably have by then, and the fact that they will be here even more than 70 years from now. I think the major purpose of this assignment was to remind me that I am going to be here a long time, and my children and their children will be here for even longer. Both our built environment and our sustainable practices will evolve a lot over that time (hopefully).

    6. One of the keys to sustainable living practices is simply being conscious. If we are aware of the actions we are taking and how they affect us then we are more likely to act responsibly. A person who is caught up in reading a book, getting down lunch before their next class, and catching up on their text messages is not thinking about where the plastic bottle they just threw in the trash can is going to go.

    7. I don’t necessarily think that my current awareness level is unhealthy, but I would like to make some changes. Most important to me, I would like to spend some quiet time alone every day, just being in the present. I would also like to work on not over-stimulating myself, less multitasking. Related, when I am with my friends or my boyfriend, I would like to work on appreciating simply being with them. I would like to become more other-oriented than task-oriented (oftentimes I’m focused on what we are doing rather than the fact that I’m doing it with someone I care about).

  15. JoAnn M says:

    1. N/A

    2. My expected age was 101 years old.

    3. I would say I’m rather thrilled with me expected age.

    4. Three things really stuck out to me when reading my feedback to extend my life. I did not realize that taking a small asprin daily would help my heart and lower my risk of a stroke or heart attack. This is something I would definitely talk to my doctor about on my next visit. Also, I knew I needed to up my exercise and lay off the sweets. These are both things that I am trying to improve, but they are still a work in progress. I want to start exercising 5-6 time a week, opposed to my 2-3 times. and I would eventually like to eliminate sweets from my daily diet for good.

    5. To sum things up, if I’m living till 101, I would certainly hope all the resources I need are available and the environment I know today are inhabitable! Being able to sustain the environment and our resources successfully will obviously affect more people than I, but from a personal standpoint, I would hope all these things to still be in tact for my family and I. This in turn, makes me personally want to strive harder to reach these goals. If I can start healthy and sustainable habits, hopefully my family will also take on these traits and then their friends. Maybe we’ll start a revolution ;-).

    6. n/a

    7. I believe you asked us about our awareness, because how can we become more sustainable if we are unaware of our behaviors? I believe by becoming more conscious, I will take actions against at least some of my negligent behavior.

    8. I believe my “present-ness” is reasonably healthy. I focus when I have to, but my mind often skips ahead to the future. It’s hard to turn off my brain, but I am trying to learn to focus it more. I believe by being able to do that, I will be able to live more peacefully and have better results for the now.

  16. Melodie Bundrage says:

    1. N/A

    2. My expected age is 91.

    3. I am extremely happy about my expected age because I have tried to consistently apply specific healthy behaviors to my life that I saw first hand family members deal with or die from such as weight maintainance and proper eating to avoid diabetes, high cholesterol and heart disease. Also prevalent in my family though is cancer from non-smoking factors so I have had a doom and gloom outlook where that is concerned in shortening my life expectancy. Since I included that answer in the quiz I was surprised that fact didn’t lower my years.

    4. Yes, the feedback included information that I was unaware of but will begin to implement to decrease heart disease. The feedback also presented to take an aspirin everyday to also prevent heart attacks but I would not incorporate that into my life without further study because I have heard that taking lots of aspirin can also cause stomach bleeding. Everything else that was mentioned I have actually over the last two years implemented already with great results including weight loss. That was an issue for my postpartum and although by statistics my current weight is still over the suggested amount, I have already lost a log of weight and don’t know if I will ever go as low as the suggested amount.

    5. Finding out my life expectancy outcome with such surprise makes me focus on doing my small part of such a big picture that most seems out of my control. My part would include educating myself on natural foods and healthy choices and anything within my household or ability to educate others to recycle, consume less, preserve water and energy so that I and generations to come can enjoy days on earth. Those things beyond my control in the built environment such as materials and ingredients in fibers, furniture and equipment I use on a daily basis will be supported from afar and hope that as sustainability issues last and education grows to the masses that worldly design and manufacturing processes will change.

    6. attachment will be submitted in class

    7. I think that you have asked up to look at our daily presence because just like finances, sometimes you don’t realize what you are doing until you track it closely and concentrate on where your money is going and how to trim the fat. I guess that is economic sustainability because tracking budgets closely normally results in consuming less but the assignment made the person aware of a broader context of what we do daily that impacts social and environmental sustainability.

    8. I think my daily awareness/presence abilities are healthy for me. I only documented what I participated in on that day but as I was completing the assignment and reading the examples, I thought of many other examples that would have been done on other days such as a shopping day. I didn’t feel that my presence level needed increasing socially or in a classroom context.

  17. Laney Haag says:

    1. N/A

    2. My calculated life expectancy is 91 years.

    3. I am happy with my life expectancy age but somewhat surprised since only one of my grandparents made it to this age.

    4. The website suggests I start taking an Asprin every night before I go to bed to avoid a heart attack or stroke. This would be fairly easy to do, but I think I would ask my doctor before since I feel like I am fairly young to start this routine. The website suggested two things that I agree I need to start doing: Flossing daily and exercising more. These are both things I will try to work on this year.

    5. I believe living in a sustainable environment would add to your calculated life expectancy. The question about the air quality where you live is a perfect example. After finding out my age it also encourages me to do more for the environment since I will hopefully be living in it for another 70 years. I can start out small by continuing to recycle & beginning to use reusable grocery bags, then I can grow from there. I think this class will help me find ways I can help out in the community.

    6. N/A

    7. I think you have asked us to look at our daily awareness because it is somewhat of a wake up call to see how many distractions we have in our lives. It also proved to me how out of touch I am with the environment as well as how much more I can do to work towards a sustainable lifestyle.

    8. I think my daily awareness is fairly healthy but I can definitely improve. I would like to work on not being so attached to my phone throughout the day. I also would like to start paying attention to other aspects of the environment besides just the weather.

  18. Danielle McDaniel says:

    1. N/A (Took life expectancy Calculator)
    2. 89
    3. I was pretty happy with my expected age. My great grandmother lived until she was 96 years old, which is a feat, considering what happened through the duration of her life. She raised all seven of her children on her own after her husband, my great grandfather, was killed in a car accident when my grandfather was in high school. I don’t really have any major medical problems in my family’s history, so I think that might have something to do with it.
    4. I think the thing that I need the most work with is managing my stress. I sometimes struggle with dealing with it. I have a problem with it all building up to the point of having a nervous breakdown. Eating healthy is always up there, I always feel that I can do better with my eating habits. Drinking more water is always a plus. I do try and have always tried to watch what I eat, it is just something that I have had instilled in me.
    5. Life expectancy and sustainability can go hand in hand. By leading a sustainable life, you become aware of the world around you, which in turn will affect your life. Eating healthy is one way of being sustainable. By eating good foods and drinking water it helps your body do the daily tasks that are required of it. The built environment is important also. Knowing what can be harmful to you is important. The use of materials found in items that make up your everyday life and how knowing how it will affect you. It’s about knowing the “new car smell” isn’t going to harm you later down the road.
    7. By tracking what we do in a day, can make us more aware of what we do. It will help us understand what we can do to be more sustainable in our everyday life and help us realize how the actions we take can be modified to be better for our built environment.
    8. I think there is always room for improvement, and I think my awareness abilities are pretty healthy. I try to always know my surroundings. I could try harder to focus in class, because I do catch myself thinking about other things in the future whether it be an hour from now or a week from now.

  19. Maggie Benoit says:

    1. Please take the Life Expectancy Calculator to see how long you are expected to live based on your current lifestyle and behaviors. You’ll need a few minutes to fill this quiz out, it asks a lot of questions in different parts of your life.
    ~~~

    2. Tell us your expected age?
    My calculated life expectancy is 103 years

    3. Are you happy or disappointed with expected age?
    In the grand scheme of things, I’d say I’m pretty happy with this score as it indicates a measure of living that supports endurance in terms of my health. Obviously there are ways to take into account lifestyle shifts regarding what I ingest and what I expose myself to, how I challenge and activate my body’s mechanisms in order to strengthen its function without frequent stagnant plateaus, etc. In terms of the quality of my years, it’s important to instill constant reminders of how to put this mindfulness to practice in many different instances. This way, these practices, over time, become a lifestyle and do not take constant “mental convincing” of the need for “practice.” With that said, 103 years is a daunting age to stretch life to…in other words, quality of life at this age would certainly present it’s challenges and frustrations. With growth and years comes a great need for acceptance in change, but a lot of deeper understanding that I think makes living life more enjoyable, so, in these terms, I’m looking forward to the aging process…as part OF the process…not part of the process to try and avoid. However, if I can live fully, healthily, and happily to an age which grants richness of life I see no need for holding my breath for the 103 finish line and the discomforts that accompany the end of that particular race.

    4. Were there any suggestions that might help you increase your expected age that you would consider changing?
    I am not a smoker. I have never been a smoker. I will never be a smoker. Although the idea is not something I’ve ever had to question as a lifestyle choice in and of myself, the idea of second hand smoke has been an irking notion tapping the back of my brain as of late. In an age where impulse readily leads to action, this is a nervous tick – a “something to do” solution to personal boredom or social anxiety or habitual gravitation – that presents itself more often than not within the friend base that I roll with. I have increasingly noticed that this exposure is more and more prevalent in my surroundings and harder to avoid in group settings. And, although I am not making the decision to smoke myself, I am making the decision to be around people who have – and continually do – make this decision. It has really gotten me thinking about the extent of impact this exposure has on my health.

    5. In your own words, what does finding out your life expectancy outcome have anything to do with “Sustainability and the Built Environment”?
    The word IMPACT comes to mind. It’s easy to live out daily routines and act based on our short terms needs, wants, and desires. And, even though we might have ideals about pursuing constructs for ourselves that support our efficiency, our fulfilling use of time, the footprints we leave in our immediate environment, the things that we are feeding both our bodies and our minds, the follow-through is not always plausible. I wouldn’t say that the effects of these inputs and outputs are of no consequence, but our realization of these consequences is often far off, belittled, and therefore not finite and not quantifiable in present consciousness. This tends to diminish the way in which we discern our “small, insignificant” actions as crucial pieces in the whole puzzle. And, by lessening the value of these actions, we also lessen the standards we hold them to. We forget to be our own constructive critics. The questions in this assessment take the time to inquire about our daily decisions made, and furthermore quantify the impact of those decisions with a number. It’s painting a picture in clear view and forcing those who take the time for some self-inquiry to consider how their “nothings” of today really DO impact their “somethings” of tomorrow.

    6. Pick one day this week to track your “awareness” levels during your daily routine (preferable that you do a M-F day and not a weekend day). The instruction for this activity are located on the attachment. You will see I attached the same document as a both a PDF and Word Doc. For those of you that can access the word doc., then you can just add your answers to the word doc which may be easier for you. The PDF will anyone with any computer to open the file without problem but you can not edit a PDF. Please answer 7-8 using the “comment” feature on the website, but submit a print copy of the “How Present Are You Worksheet” in the beginning of class on 1/19.
    WORKSHEET BELOW:
    how-present-are-you-worksheet_one-day_PDF
    how-present-are-you-worksheet_one-day_Word Doc

    7. Why do you think I have asked you to look at your daily awareness and presence in a class about sustainable living?
    My thoughts on this act as a supplement to my thoughts regarding #5. Being aware implies mindfulness and mindfulness demands the power of choice, the power to know the spectrum of your options, the affirmation of deciding where you stand, and how you want to take action based on those decisions. Awareness instills conviction. Breaking it down to the playing field we’ve been toying with in class, I really appreciated Natalia Allen’s words: “It’s not enough just to react, we have to be informed.” Taking count, paying attention, and quantifying our actions is a way of learning, of informing ourselves. It’s a way equate the reality of the situation and then use that information to take a stance on how we wish to move forward – either to instigate change, or even to practice repetition, for that matter.

    8. Do you think your daily awareness/present abilities are healthy for you or would like to make some changes?
    Honestly, my level of “connectedness” is something I’ve been considering for a while. Though outlets like my phone, email, + facebook are all things I use to be aware on many levels and communicate effectively, there is also a certain “mind clog” that weasels its way in and has a persistent nagging tone. The benefits are also coupled with a level of dilution. The impact of the internet suggests a need to be “everything to everyone.” Let’s be real, a concept of that magnitude is ENTIRELY overwhelming and takes away from our ability to be present and engaged, aware rather, IN.THE.PRESENT.MOMENT.

  20. Aubrey says:

    2. My expected age age is 84

    3.I am surprised and happy about this expected age. Because I am a smoker I expected it to be much lower.

    4.I would consider many of the suggestions made. Ideally I would like to follow all of them. Some of the suggestions made were minimizing or cutting out caffine, stopping smoking, flossing everyday, not eating fast food, exercising 3-7 days a week, eating sweets only twice a week, minimizing exposure to the sun, taking an asprine a day, managing stress better, and other suggestions. Realistically I think I would be better about moderating the amount of these suggestions rather than adding them to a daily routine. For example, I would do better at having two cigarettes a day at first rather than quitting, or having only two glasses of wine a week rather than several beers. I definitely feel that flossing everyday eating fast food on occasion, drinking tea, and trying to manage stress better are things I feel comfortable doing in order to increase my life expectancy.

    5. I think there is a definite relationship between finding out our life expectancy and thinking about sustainability and the built environment, as long as we act on the suggestions made to increase life expectancy. Doing these things that make us and the people around us healthier brings a sense of good energy and also an awareness. If we are thinking about how our world affects us we will also start to consider how we affect the world, and what things we can do to have a positive symbiotic relationship. Hurting the environment by having habits that promote unsustainable behaviors will affect us negatively in the long run. For example, if we choose to get more exercise by walking instead of driving our car, we are acting in a manner that increases the sustainability of our environment while also adding to our life expectancy and over-all well being. It is, in my opinion a cyclical process.

    7. I think the reason you’re asking us this question is because you recognize that the only way we will be able to make a change is to understand the issue, and the way we do that is by understanding how these issues affect us on a personal level. This whole assignment is focused on reflecting on ourselves, then zooming out to see the big picture. We have to ask ourselves “how does my behavior affect my health, then the people I care about, then the world around me.” There is an important process that takes place, which starts with an assignment like this where students have to fill in the areas of ignorance with explanation. It makes us question our personal responsibility to the world and people around us. For example, as a smoker I have always had a level off annoyance when someone gives me a bad look for smoking in a public area. Of course I try my best to respect people space and go somewhere where there are not a lot of people around. i knew second hand smoke was something to think about but maybe I didn’t consider it enough of an issue to warrant anyone giving me a look. Now that I know second hand smoke is even more harmful to inhale then first hand smoke, I can start to understand and be sympathetic to those people that have an issue. This though causes change, and begins to address an overall issue.

    8. After completing this assignment there are definitely areas that are unhealthy and that I would like to take actions towards changing. Smoking is the biggest issue in my opinion. I have always felt that it doesn’t make sense to say you want to quit smoking and keep doing it. To be honest I haven;t yet reached a point where I can say I truly wanted to quit smoking. I enjoy it and see it almost as a phase. I can, after this assignment however, say that I would like to start being more aware of the importance to which I hold smoking. It has become increasingly more necessary to have a cigarette and I want to make a change towards moderation. Other areas that I want to make changes are with things that I haven’t considered to be a big deal, but which I now realize can make a difference in the span of a lifetime. For example, flossing everyday is such a an easy task, but one I have overlooked because I never considered that it mattered.

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