Okay, I’m a solar geek. Come on, my nickname is “Solar Fred.” But I was seriously thinking the other day that solar power is not only a great technology, but also a great metaphor for life, money, and happiness. For example:
1) Clouds and darkness are temporary. The sun still rises in the morning.
Bad weather can ruin daily solar production, but it never lasts. Same thing in life. When faced with a bad day or some set back, I take a step back and realize it’s temporary and move forward. Like the sun, good times do return.
2) Thinking long term pays off in the end.
If you’re going to buy a solar hot water system, it’s going to be an investment. People and businesses are often scared of that upfront payment, but it does pay off in spades. (Check our calculator.) Short term thinkers would rather spend extra money on a Lexus—a depreciating asset—instead of a Honda. I used to think that way too, but now I look at a solar system and I think long term. Investing in my 401k and enjoying life. There’s just less bling and more balanced goals for the future.
3) Solar power is about embracing change.
The default energy source in the world for the last few hundred years has been fossil fuels like coal and gas. Solar hot water and solar PV (and other renewables) are going to change that this decade. Politicians who try to slow down solar policies are fighting the future instead of embracing it. Similarly in life, whether it’s a job or relationship, stuff happens. Instead of fighting change, we need to look forward and not hold onto things that may not only be gone, but may also be unhealthy.
4) Even on cloudy days, you can count on the back up systems.
There are cloudy days when your solar water heating system doesn’t produce enough solar hot water, but no worries. Solar hot water systems are almost always backed up by conventional power for the less productive times. So too in life. Family and friends have always been there for me, and they’re often as automatic as solar back up systems.
5) Solar is inspiring, but you don’t have to go solar to make a positive difference.
I know. Our restaurant and apartment building customers mainly go solar because it makes financial sense thanks to the subsidies. But money aside, given a choice between polluting fossil fuels and solar, wouldn’t everyone choose clean, renewable solar? Outside of solar, there are many things we can do that are also good—though inconvenient at first. Like not using plastic water bottles, or taking reusable bags to the grocery store. Yes, it’s a pain, but personally, I feel great when I do it, and so it’s becoming a habit.
I hope all of the above solar-inspired thoughts and habits become habits for the world as well. If you want to learn more about solar hot water, please feel free to ask us or become a fan and post a question on our new Facebook page.