We all want to make a difference. But with daily demands, complicated decisions, and a glut of information, we often fall short of our goals.
Even so, we all can make strides to lessen our impact on our planet while improving our health and well-being.
Want to make a change but aren’t sure where to start?
This article breaks down ten ways to lead a more sustainable lifestyle. Keep reading to learn how you can use these sustainable practices in your daily life to reduce waste and improve your quality of life.
- Avoid Single-Use Plastics
Avoiding single-use plastics is key to leading a more sustainable lifestyle. Make sure to bring your reusable containers when shopping or dining out. Stop using plastic straws and opt for straws made from alternative materials.
Bring your reusable bag when shopping. Always bring a travel mug with you if you plan on getting coffee or tea. Say no to disposable cutlery when ordering online.
Avoid pre-packaged items in the grocery store. Buy bar soap instead of plastic containers of body wash.
Instead of using plastic packaging for gifts, try using fabric gift bags or reusable boxes. Try to stay informed on any new regulations or bans related to single-use plastic in your area.
- Invest in Sustainable Transportation
Investing in sustainable transportation is one of the key ways to lead a more sustainable lifestyle and lessen our impact on the planet. Biking or walking to work, errands, and other functions when convenient can help decrease emissions from cars and public transportation systems.
If biking or walking is not workable, public transportation or cleaning and burning vehicles is a positive choice. Carpooling and ride-sharing can also help reduce emissions. It provides the added benefit of lower transportation costs.
For those who need to use their vehicle, opt for an electric, hybrid, or more fuel-efficient vehicle to drive. It will help decrease emissions and lower the cost of fuel and maintenance.
Buying secondhand also reduces one’s transportation impact from traveling to and from stores. It reduces the energy and resources used in manufacturing new items. Taking responsibility for our lifestyle choices can help us lead a more sustainable lifestyle.
- Shop Local and Support Local Business
Shopping locally and supporting local businesses is a great way to lead a more sustainable lifestyle. Buying local products minimizes the environmental impact of transportation. Items don’t need to be transported over long distances.
Buying local also boosts the local economy, as the money stays in the community and supports small businesses. Local farms and businesses often practice sustainability, such as using organic and locally sourced materials. Buying local contributes to a community-oriented, sustainable lifestyle and helps to protect the environment by reducing resources used for transportation and materials.
Furthermore, buying local can be enjoyable. Spending time in the community, checking out farmer’s markets and independent stores is a great way to get to know local merchants. It also explores the unique qualities of the area in which you live. With a bit of effort and some time, shopping locally can be an easy, enjoyable way to lead a more sustainable living.
- Harness the Power of Renewable Energy Sources
Harnessing the power of renewable energy sources is a great way to lead a more sustainable lifestyle. Renewable energy is power sourced from natural resources. It includes wind, water, sunlight, and geothermal heat, meaning it replenishes over time.
It does not rely on finite resources, such as oil or coal, and thus it does not pollute the environment or contribute to global warming. Investing in renewable energy community projects and installing solar panels on your home can help reduce your impact. Other examples include reducing energy usage by transitioning to an energy-efficient lightbulb.
Upgrading to an electric car and switching to a green energy provider. Make use of natural resources, like the sun to take advantage of sustainable energy sources. It can help reduce the effects of climate change. For more information, click for more on solar.
- Conserve Water
One of the most effective ways to lead a more sustainable lifestyle is to conserve water. Start by fixing any leaks, both indoors and outdoors. Indoor faucets, washing machines, and toilets are usually the biggest culprits.
Take shorter showers, and be sure to turn off the tap while brushing your teeth or washing your hands. Switching to a low-flow showerhead can save up to 20,000 gallons of water per year. Installing rain barrels and using gray water for outdoor plants can also help save water.
When gardening, keep deeper-rooted, drought-tolerant plants and mulch to prevent evaporation. To save on energy costs, run dishwashers and washing machines only when full.
Be mindful when washing your car and use a hose with a shut-off nozzle. Remember that even small changes can make a big difference in conserving water and leading a sustainable living.
- Commit to a Waste-Free Kitchen
One great and easy way to lead a more sustainable lifestyle is to commit to a waste-free kitchen. To do this, you should look for ways to reduce waste in the household and discard items that are no longer used.
This can include using glass or stainless steel containers to store leftovers. Also, use reusable paper towels instead of relying on disposable ones.
Food scraps should be composted to reduce landfill waste. You should try and remember to bring your shopping bags and opt for bulk items when available. Following these simple steps in your kitchen can help reduce your contribution to global waste.
- Buy Local to Help Our Communities
Buying local is an important way to lead a more sustainable lifestyle and help our communities. Rather than buying products around the world, buying locally helps to lessen your impact and promote sustainability. This can also help to create jobs and stimulate economic growth in our neighborhoods.
Some tips to buy locally include buying organic and locally-grown produce and shopping at farmers’ markets. Also, buy handmade products to support local craftspeople, frequent local stores, and boutiques, seek out items with made local labels, and support local restaurants.
Attending farmer’s markets and flea markets are excellent options for discovering local products and services. By supporting local businesses, we can help to reduce our environmental footprint.
- Learn the Ins-and-Outs of Recycling
Leading a more sustainable lifestyle is a great way to reduce our carbon footprint and lessen our impact on the planet. An important part of leading a sustainable lifestyle is understanding the ins and outs of recycling. It’s important to figure out what can and cannot be recycled by checking with your local recycling service.
Many recycle items like paper, cardboard, metal, and plastic. Once you figure out what can and cannot be recycled, consider donating items that are still used to prevent them from going into the trash. Look for nearby recycling centers that accept items that your local program doesn’t take.
When you buy new items, be sure to select those made with recycled materials to ensure that the sustainably-sourced items are used again. With a little effort and research, you can be sure that your efforts to lead a more sustainable lifestyle.
- Invest in Eco-Friendly Home Products
Investing in eco-friendly home products is one way to lessen your impact to lead a more sustainable lifestyle. Start by switching to LED lighting. It is more energy efficient than traditional bulbs.
Invest in Energy Star-certified appliances and air conditioning units, which limit energy consumption. Home insulation is recommended to reduce the energy used in heating and cooling. Buy products made from sourced materials, like bamboo or recycled plastic.
A great addition to your home is aquaponic systems, which use a closed-loop system where the water is reused many times for gardening. Taking the initiative to invest in eco-friendly products in your home will help you reduce your environmental impact.
- Advocate for Change: Get Active and Promote Greener Practices
The reality of climate change has spurred many to look for ways to lessen their impact. From reducing consumption and reducing one’s carbon footprint to advocating for change and promoting greener practices, there are many ways to lead a more sustainable lifestyle.
For example, writing or calling your elected officials to share your concerns about climate is one action to help advocate for change. Getting active in a community group or attending a rally for a cause are other ways to make your voice heard.
Promoting greener practices such as planting trees, composting your food waste, making use of renewable energy sources, turning down the thermostat in winter, and using reusable shopping bags, are all important steps in promoting sustainability.
Discover More About a Sustainable Lifestyle
Leading a more sustainable lifestyle is easier than you think. Try introducing one or two of these ten tips into your daily routine and challenge yourself to see how many you can do.
Doing so can help decrease the impact we have on our planet and work towards a more sustainable future. Let’s work together and make a sustainable lifestyle the new normal.
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