Back in the third grade, I started a “Save the World!” club at school and I’d go to each classroom and talk to the class for a few minutes on the importance of recycling. As a kid, I was on the right track haha, but if I’m being honest, I did stop being so eco-conscious as I grew up.
Lately however, in my wellness journey, I have been doing my best to be more conscious and mindful of the environment I live in. Part of living well for me, also means I’m living well for what’s around me. My small actions directly impact the world and environment around me, in either a positive or negative way. Here are some super simple steps I have taken to leading a more environmentally friendly lifestyle. Maybe some of these will help you too!
Ditch the plastic straws
The first time I actually even thought about plastic straws was when I was out with my friends and the bartender served me a cocktail without a straw. I asked for one but her response was, “We definitely have them and can give you one if you insist but we just choose to not serve them to help save the planet.” When she put it that way, it really put things in perspective for me! Of course when positioned that way, I didn’t want to take one and I’ve continued to not intentionally take a straw or ask for one.
What is the exact impact that plastic straws have on our environment?
Plastic straws end up in the ocean when they’re either left on the beach accidentally, or littered, or even blown out of trash cans that have been overfilling. It is consistently within the top 10 debris collected at beach clean-ups. Luckily some straws get picked up in beach clean-ups but many straws do not. Plastic will not dissolve and biodegrade, so the pieces of plastic that make it into the ocean pose a threat to marine life.
Grab some reusable bags
Think about how many Ziploc and sandwich bags you go through each year? I used to always carry my veggie sticks, chips, random hair accessories in plastic zip up bags. Now there are so many more eco-conscious alternatives to use. I have an assortment of Stasher bags that come in different sizes, for varying purposes.
The cost on them may seem high so it might not seem worth it to make an investment, and perhaps the environmental impact isn’t a good enough reason for you to switch over. But, if you put into perspective exactly how many times you re-purchase the plastic baggies, the cost of Stasher bags is actually very affordable!
Use your legs and walk!
You can not only do something great for the environment by walking but you can also meet your step count and move your body! The other day, I mapped out one of the gyms that I regularly go to is exactly 1 mile away. However, each time I went I would drive my car. So, I made it a conscious decision that any time I would go to that gym I would walk or jog over. What a great way to warm up and also cool down from a workout! Plus, there’s a Cafe Gratitude along the way so I can always easily pick up a smoothie on the way back home. 🙂
This should be so obvious and easy to do by now since everything that matters now is digital. Make sure that all your bills are set for paperless billing and unsubscribe to any catalogs you no longer look at. The less paper you use in your life, the less paper that needs to be produced.
Use reusable bags when grocery shopping
When you have to go to the store, always make sure to carry reusable bags with you – not just to carry your groceries out of the store but also to use them as you shop. Think about all the produce you may purchase, each one in its own plastic bag. A good way to reduce plastic use is to opt for these organic muslin bags.
Choose old cloth towels over paper towels
Whenever I have to wipe down the kitchen countertop or I’m doing some cleaning around the house, I used to always use paper towels. I would go through a roll so so quickly! But now I use and re-use gym towels to wipe off dust around the house and clean up mess. I go through paper towels much less frequently now and honestly, an old towel is much more durable and does the job better!
I hope some of these tips are useful to you! They’re such easy, small things we can do in our lives that will help protect this one world we have! xo