Sustainable living in a Few Easy Steps….
When someone says to you ” Oh my life is 100% sustainable” what does this mean to you? I know for me, up until a few years ago I was still really confused by the whole concept. If you’d tried to search “sustainable living” up you would have been bombarded with lots of conflicting advice. I think in some ways this is what puts people off making the transition, there almost seems to be this unspoken view that you’ve got to make major life changes.
Well thankfully opinions are changing, the “sustainability movement” is far less judgy now! It’s much more about making small changes in your life and making sure you stick with them. Yeah we could all shout from the rooftops about becoming sustainable, make a load of changes in our day-to-day and within a week have fallen flat on our faces because it’s too much too soon! I found that for me the most important thing was not to implement too many changes at one time.
So how can we do this? here are a few ways that you can easily become more sustainable in your life.
Turn off your appliances and Lights when you’re not using them – At the main switch / Un-Plug
Hang Up your clothes to Dry instead of using the Tumble Dryer – Ours literally hang from Curtain Poles, Every Spare Radiator, Clothes Horse… if it can hold a hanger & it’s near warmth its usable space!
Set your thermostat Lower and wear a warmer Jumper – You’ll be surprised the difference it makes to your Heating bill & how quickly you adapt!
Try to switch out some of the Disposable Products where possible – Single use items such as Razors, Plastic Cups, Bags, Knives & Forks. Try to think about the life expectancy of the item your buying and if you there might be an alternative option. We want to stop adding to the Landfill mess we have growing all over the planet if we can. Where we think there are only plastic options available like Cotton Buds for example, You can actually buy paper stem ones from Superdrug. This way they are not going into Landfill, you know they can be recycled.
Stop Using Cotton Pads, Disposable Face Wipes, Baby Wipes – Try microfiber re-usable face cloths such as Facehalo that remove your makeup with just water. You don’t even need to use makeup remover and they rinse under the tap ready to use again straight away.
Turn the water tap off between brushing your teeth to limit your water usage – It’s so easy to leave the tap running but actually it uses so much excess water.
Try to re-sell and donate as many unwanted items of yours as you can – Obviously if an item is completely battered then you have no option for re-sale but there are usually still charities that will take clothing, electronics etc to be broken down. It’s always worth a wee bit of research before you bin anything.
Switch to as many “Online / Non – Paper” statements as possible for Bills and Household Documents to cut down on paper consumption.
Buy re-usable water and coffee bottles – Don’t be shy at asking the local coffee shop to fill your cup up instead of a plastic/paper one, most actually like that people are doing this now as it saves them money too!
Drink water from the tap instead of bottled – If tap water isn’t great then buy yourself a filter it will still work out cheaper in the long run.
Use reusable Bags – so many people still buy 5p plastic bags! fold up a wee cloth bag and keep it with you then you never need to purchase plastic again.
Replace all bulbs with LED where possible – they’re proven to last longer and it reduces the cost and need to replace them so often.
This is obviously just a few wee ideas to get you thinking. You’ll find once you start thinking about your life and making changes it becomes so much easier to see other ways to swap and adapt everyday items. I’m definitely no expert and I’m still finding my own way but just remember take the pressure off, do what you can and even a small change makes a huge difference in the long run.
Let me know in the comments if you do any of the above already or if you plan to try and implement and of the ideas into your everyday!