It’s a new year, and for a lot of people it is an opportunity to hit the reset button and start all over again—especially when it comes to their fitness and health. One of the most common new year’s resolution of many is their promise to take better care of their bodies, watch their diet and exercise regularly. Listing them down maybe fun and encouraging, but majority find that sticking to these yearly changes very difficult.
These are our wrapped-up suggestions (and our own) resolutions for a greener living.
Would you like to join us?
While you’re making a list of New Year’s resolutions, consider this: instead of setting a goal to lose weight, focus on shrinking your environmental impact.
Your diet can have a significant impact on the planet. In 2016, resolve to make greener decisions about the types of foods you eat, the processes used to produce them, and the places you shop. The following seven tips will help:
«New year’s resolutions have a long history. The Babylonians pledged to return borrowed objects and repay their debts at the start of each year, while the Romans kicked off January by making a vow to the god Janus (from whom the month takes its name). That’s centuries of potential for broken promises.
Psychologists recently proposed that, for behaviour change to occur, people must have the capability, opportunity and motivation to make it happen. Often people aren’t making resolutions for the right reasons, says Gardner: “They think that because it’s new year, they’re obliged to say they’ll change their behaviour. But once they face the reality of what they’re doing, they give up because they aren’t motivated enough in the first place.”»
Many of us make New Year’s resolutions every year, to help us achieve our financial goals or to improve our health, but not too many of us make those New Year’s resolutions for environmental reasons.
However, if you’re concerned about having a smaller environmental footprint, and saving money while you’re at it, here are 9 simple and effective green New Year’s resolutions that you can put into practice in 2015.
Some of these are really basic, such as not buying bottled water, or bringing a reusable shopping bag with you to the store, but some of them, such as going to paperless billing for your monthly bills, carpooling, or retrofitting your shower with a low-flow showerhead, might not be high on the list of effective green New Year’s resolutions, but the more people that adopt these practices, the more sustainable our world will get.
But wait, that’s not all, how about taking some Sustainable Resolutions for your Diet? or some small-change big-impact resolutions that don’t involve a crash diet or unsustainably aggressive fitness plan? Iff you live in Australia and you would like a daily reminder, why not getting the Greener By the Day 2015 Calendar?
Manage your waste
Separate your garbage at home. Reuse what you can, send those that can be recycled to recycling plants, and collect organic waste for compost. By managing your waste properly, you will be able to send only those meant for landfills.
Make do with things you already have
Buy less crap. Next time you go out shopping, resist the temptation of purchasing trinkets, thingamabobs and what sits you only find cute but really don’t have any use for at all. Instead, make do of things you already have.
Go for organic food
When doing grocery, go for produce from local farmers. Local produce reduces the need for transporting food. It’s healthy for you and the environment.
Get a reusable bag
A reusable bag when going shopping not only is it convenient (carrying all your grocery in a single bag), it also lessens plastic bags that end up in the trash every minute.
Switch to energy-saving appliances
You can start by switching to energy-saving appliances. Check the energy label – more stars means more energy efficient.
Line dry your washed clothes
Instead of using the dryer, line dry newly washed clothes and sheets. It saves electricity and forces you to exercise altogether.
Choose safer cleaning products
When purchasing cleaning materials, choose those with ingredients that have less impact on the environment and human health. You can also choose those with recyclable packaging to reduce garbage.
Green up your work space
Commit to turning off electronics in your office every night. Have your whole department do this for maxium impact.
Green your ride
Evaluate how you currently get to work each day and make a pledge to reduce your impact. If you can ride the bus, bike, walk, or car pool, make this pledge.
Never buy bottled water again
Trade your bottled water habit for an at-home filtering pitcher; pair it with a reusable bottle
Brew your own Fair Trade coffee
Carrying your own coffee in an insulated travel mug helps you reduce waste from cardboard cups and carrying sleeves.
Cut back on paper towels
Invest in a few cotton cloths and some fabric napkins; then drop them in the wash when you run a load of laundry. Using the cloth alternatives is just as easy as using the paper versions.
Become a weekend vegetarian
Cutting meat out of your diet just two days a week can decrease your carbon footprint by about 1/3 of a ton — and coming up with meat-free meals for Saturday and Sunday isn’t as hard as it sounds. Try pancakes and fruit for breakfast; fresh salads or roasted vegetable sandwiches for lunch; and veggie pizza, bean soups, and creamy risottos for dinner. And since doubling a recipe rarely adds any time to your prep work, you can make extras to eat throughout the week (and trim your carbon footprint even more).
Replace your lightbulbs
Replacing your lightbulbs with compact fluorescent lights may be the ultimate change for the eco-slacker.