Sustainable living is becoming something that more and more of us aspire to. I think we’re all much more aware than we used to be of the impact we have on the world we live in, and for me personally now I’m a parent I’m very conscious of the world we’re creating for our children.
It can all feel a bit overwhelming though, and it’s easy to think that there’s not much that we can personally do to have any kind of impact. Every change we make really does help though, so from something as simple as switching lights off when you leave a room to a big change like buying an electric car and installing a NewMotion charging station at home, here are 10 ways we can all try to live a more sustainable lifestyle.
1. Eat more locally produced foods.
Start to think a bit more carefully about where your food comes from. So much fossil fuel energy is used transporting food from other countries for us to buy in the supermarkets. If we all started shopping more locally it would make a really big environmental impact, as well as supporting the local economy.
So visit your local food market if you can, or look to choose the locally produced options in the supermarket as much as possible.
If you don’t already do so, then recycling as much as possible is a great step towards a more sustainable lifestyle.
Check out the recycling facilities that your local council offers and take advantage of them as much as you can. We recycle cardboard, plastics, glass and tin cans here, and all our food waste gets collected by the council too. Once you get into the habit of sorting through things instead of just shoving them into the bin you find it really doesn’t take much time at all. It can be a bit worrying at times though, to see how much plastic waste we create.
3. Use less plastic.
Following on from the last point, using less plastic is really important for a sustainable lifestyle.
If you drink a lot of bottled water then breaking that habit is an easy way to have a big impact. Drink tap water at home (use a filter jug if you live in a hard water area) and buy a reusable drinks bottle to take out and about with you so you don’t end up popping into a shop and buying a plastic bottle of water.
4. Speed up your showers.
Most parents are probably pros at quick showers, squeezed in while the baby naps or while the ipad holds their child’s attention for a few precious moments. If you still have the luxury of long, steamy showers though it might be time to consider speeding them up a bit for the environment’s sake.
5. Get a new car.
This is a big one, but if you’re looking to change your car in the near future then consider getting an electric one, or a hybrid. Not only are they better for the environment but they’re also cheaper to run and to maintain.
6. Use your feet.
If you’re not in a position to change your car, then think about just trying to use your current one less.
When you’re not actually going that far try to walk , or ride your bike. So much better for you and for the environment.
7. Rethink your washing routine.
When it comes to the laundry there are a few things we can change, like washing at lower temperatures, handwashing if we only have a few items to clean, and drying clothes on a washing line or airer rather than using a tumble dryer.
8. Layer up.
As the temperatures drop in the winter the first thing we want to do is turn the heating up at home. If you can though, try a few other things first to stay warm. Use draft excluders to stop cold air creeping in to your house. Put on a warm jumper and a cosy pair of slippers. Cosy up under a blanket on the sofa.
9. Get a bag for life.
Plastic really is a big problem for the environment, so try to remember to take a bag for life, or a backpack, to the supermarket with you when you do your shopping. And if you do your food shopping online make sure you tick the box at the checkout for it to be delivered without bags.
Before you throw anything away take a minute to see if it could be reused or repurposed in any way. If you have children then think about using charity shops and nearly new sales to buy their presents. Young children honestly do not care if a toy is brand new or not. In the same way, if you have toys and clothes that your children have outgrown then pass them on to a friend, or a charity shop.
So there you have it. 10 different ways to start living a more sustainable lifestyle.
Which of these do you already do?
Disclaimer: This is a collaborative post.