So, you’re finally convinced. – you need to make some changes in your life & become more green. But with so much information, sometimes it can seem easier to just continue living blissfully unaware & ignore it all.
Like so many things, there’s no need to jump in & do it all at once. You don’t need to start composting, recreating your wardrobe out of entirely organic cotton, or switching over to 100% solar power. Although I consider myself rather green, there are many things on my green wish list that I’ll do once I can. I can’t compost where I live now, nor can I convince the landlords to install solar panels on the apartment building roof. As for organic cotton, all I have is one pair of socks. They’re unbelievably soft & I hope to add to them soon, but I’m far from able to buy the sustainable clothing that I’d like too. Someday we’ll have organic cotton or bamboo bedding, but for now, our old sheets still work just fine.
Here are five simple ways you can go green, right now:
01. Please, start recycling! Figure out where it’s done in your community, & how they do it. We don’t have curbside pickup where I live, but we are fortunate that we don’t have to divide it up. Glass, metal, & plastic all go into one container, & all types of paper go into another. You’ll be surprised how many things use plastic once you switch to doing this, & how easy it really is.
02. Use reusable bags when you go shopping. You don’t have to purchase the ones all the stores are enticing you with, I promise! You probably have tote bags lying around your house already, or here’s an idea for what to do with old pillowcases. When you forget your bags (it’ll happen) & must resort to those plastic bags, ask that they put as many things as possible into a bag, & forego them if you have just one to two items. Any bags that you take home, recycle them. Many grocery stores have bins outside for just this purpose!
03. Stop buying things you don’t need. Food, clothes, shoes, appliances – how many things do you purchase that you don’t truly need? Manufacturing uses lots of resources. If enough of us stem the tide, maybe we’ll avoid the world as invisioned in Wall-E.
04. When it comes to food, we get all sorts of mixed messages. Buy organic! Buy local! Only buy when it’s both! People who live in organic paradises like California may have these options, but for a few months in the summer, local produce isn’t available in Ohio, let alone organic. Sure, I’d love to grow my own food, but at the moment, I don’t have that option. So my advice is this: buy both when you can, then buy local, then buy organic when it looks alright. The organic produce in the stores around here often is already halfway rotted, & that’s just not healthy for anyone. Another option is to buy organic frozen veggies – those are supposedly fresher from the freezer since they’re frozen right away, rather than being picked nearly ripe & then shipped thousands of miles away. But when it comes down to it, I’m not going to skip vegetables for nine months of the year, so I do purchase “conventional” produce as well.
Also – focus on the fact that eating organic is what’s good for the soil. I’ve recently seen several articles with lists of food that suggest if your body doesn’t come in contact with pesticides, you can go ahead & skip purchasing them organically – made me want to cry. The soil & groundwater of our planet is in such bad shape in all those places where they grow using pesticides! We’re trying to heal the Earth, not just ourselves!
05. Realize the energy you use has to come from somewhere, & it’s almost always a nonrenewable resource. Can you live without your air conditioner for a few weeks longer? Do you really need to drive your car to the ATM? Could you skip the dryer, the mower, or the computer today? Be more aware of what you consume, & see what you can do to lessen it!
Consider this your action plan. Start here, then add more as you go. I promise it’s easy!