Whether you like it or not, everything you do has an impact. It may be pretty small in the grand scheme of things, which is often why a lot of people feel powerless when it comes to making a difference in the world, but it only takes so many of these small impacts to make a larger impression.
Sometimes I feel like I'm watching the planet deteriorate before my very eyes, and that's scary. But (so as not to make this blog post too heavy and depressing) I think there are ways in which we can all contribute to slowing down the process (let's be real, the damage is pretty much irreversible, aha.) Damn it, Rhiannon, less of the heaviness... Don't get me wrong, everyone leads very different lives and some of us will have more limitations and responsibilities than others...but guess what - we are all responsible for the planet! Yay! So I've put together a list of 10 things that we can all do to live a bit more sustainably. 1. Transportation Think about your methods of transport. How often do you drive somewhere? Do you need to drive? Can you walk? Can you cycle? Do you think maybe you could learn to cycle? Even if a vehicle is needed for you to get from A to B, you can still be mindful. You can car share. Take public transport. Walk somewhere if it will only take you an extra 15 minutes. Get your food delivered. Turn off your engine if you're not going anywhere.
2. Invest in a dressing gown!
Dressing gowns changed my life. Not only are they hella comfy, they keep you toasty all day everyday whilst you're at home. And this can be particularly useful if you're wanting to save energy. Following on from that, think about when you actually need to heat up your home. Wearing more layers is saving you money and saving your energy.
3. Get yourself a reusable water bottle When I was travelling, the amount of plastic waste I saw on beaches and on the road side almost made me cry. And I know in a lot of countries the water isn't safe to drink, but thanks to technology we now have amazing bottles that actually filter out shit. I know, it's mind-blowing. For day-to-day use I have a Chilly's bottle, which keep my drinks at the right temperature, and although they're a little bit spenny there are plenty of other water bottles that you can find for cheaper, and which do the same thing. It's a very simple thing to do but a really important one.
4. Eat less meat I could go on about this all day, but eating less meat is so important when it comes to reducing the effects of climate change. So much deforestation occurs to make way for farming and the methane emissions from cows and fertilizers create an impact rivaling the effects of all the world's cars, trucks and airplanes. With so many more vegetarian and vegan options now available, this is more easily achievable than ever.
5. Plan your meals Following on from that, I think it's important to plan your meals, or even just plan what sort of things you're going to eat during the week. It's so easy to create a ridiculous amount of waste from buying unnecessarily produce. Planning meals may seem boring but you'll be saving time, money and energy in the grand scheme of things.
6. Re-use bags Totally self-explanatory! I often try to keep a random plastic bag with me wherever I go, just in case I buy something or need to carry something. Hella useful! And seriously, they don't take up much space.
7. Toiletries If you know me you'll know that I am a massive fan of LUSH - not only are all their products amazing but they are one of the most environmentally conscious beauty brands out there. I've started using their solid shampoo bars, which last for absolutely ages and require zero packaging. Their tubs and bottles are all recyclable and the ingredients they use are also a lot better for your body. BUY STUFF FROM LUSH. You won't be disappointed, I promise.
8. Go paperless where possible We are actually very lucky to be living in a technological age - though there may be disadvantages to everything pretty much being online, one of the best things is that we have access to e-tickets, paperless bank statements, virtual messages...you name it.
9. Think before you throw Most of us just chuck things away without thinking. The next time you do that, ask yourself: Where is that thing that I just chucked away actually going? Can you recycle it? Can you donate it? Can you FIX it? Can you give it to a friend? A lot of 'things', once made, are here to stay, and can't be destroyed easily, or without consequences (rubbish, viruses, babies, you name it.) Seriously though, think before you buy, and think before you throw.
10. Spread awareness! It's all well and good you trying to do your bit, but encourage other people to do their bit, too. We're all in this together after all!