Make 2017 the year your green New Year’s resolution sticks. Do you want to fight climate change, live a more sustainable and green life? Me too. It’s an awesome goal and I am so excited to try to achieve it with you, but neither of us will get very far if we don’t know how to make that happen. That’s why I’m sharing 5 New Years Resolutions for a greener 2017 that you can use as inspiration for your own green New Years resolution. Make this year your greenest year yet, with a green New Year’s resolution!
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Go Waste Free in the Kitchen
It’s time to save money and reduce waste in the kitchen. Plastic wrap is useful in the short term, but is a few days of use (plus cutting your finger on that sharp blade, and fighting with it to get it to stick to what you want it to stick to instead of itself) really worth it? No. It’s not. There are some great alternatives out there, like the infinitely more recyclable foil, or reusable options like Beeswrap, or reusable storage containers.
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Smaller Steps: Not ready to go waste free? Then aim to reduce waste, for example, no more plastic shopping bags or no more plastic containers!
Buy Ethically Sourced Products
Commit to buying only ethically sourced products and foods. this can be difficult as it’s not always easy to see how a company’s supply chain works and what goes into making the products but there are some guides you can use to help you make responsible choices. Start by looking for Fair Trade foods & clothing, this means that those who produce the product are paid fairly for the work they do. If animal rights is a focus for you, look for the Leaping Bunny logo and support only companies that do not test on animals.
Protip: Download the Buycott app to easily find out what brands meet or don’t meet your ethical stances! Everything from social causes to environmental causes all in one handy app. It’s available for free on iOS and Android.
Engage in Activism
One of the biggest ways you can create positive change is by getting involved in activism for causes that matter to you. Get involved! Attend local city and town hearings and meetings, vote in local elections and donate to causes that matter to you. Another simple and often overlooked way you can create change is by speaking frankly and openly about it. Call out your friends for littering, reprimand them for catcalling, stand up against injustice & intolerance you may encounter in your every day life. Even something as small as a word of kindness can make a big impact.
You don’t have to go for the full minimalist lifestyle, after all, it isn’t for everyone. However, you can commit to buying less, especially when it comes to “cheap plastic crap”. There are many options that are more sustainable that you could choose instead of purchasing a new item, including borrowing or renting it, or buying it used. By committing to purchase less you are reducing demand for many of the products that are damaging our world. So before you buy that thing, stop and think: Do you really need it? Or do you just want it? Are there better, more sustainable alternatives you could choose?
Smaller Step: Become aware of your own purchasing habits. Discover where you can reduce spending in different areas of your shopping life. If you find yourself frequently buying items that wear out, perhaps going for longer lasting items would be better. If you discover you often buy new items that are used once (or never) then lay around taking up space, take the time to figure out why that is, and what can you learn from those habits?
Okay, will loving more really make your life greener? Well, maybe you can’t quantify it, but I’d like to think so! By cultivating love for everything, for our natural world and all that is in it, for the people who inhabit this world – even the ones very different from ourselves, it certainly makes you think a bit more about engaging in activities that could be damaging to those things. I don’t know about you, but my love of nature, and of animals is one of my biggest motivators for living a greener life. It means I try to buy sustainable products that don’t hurt nature, and that I try to buy things that aren’t tested on animals and don’t hurt them. Love is ones of the best motivators, it’s also one thing this world desperately needs right now, along with compassion and a big does of empathy.
So don’t live a green life because you feel obligated to. Because it’s a “cool” or popular thing to do (is it one of those things? I don’t know o.O ). Do it because you love it. Do it because it helps you protect the things you love. Do it, because it’s an extension of your love for your fellow humans, animals, and the world that sustains and supports you. Let love guide you to the support the causes you are passionate about, to help those who are in pain, who suffer, who are oppressed and whose voices are silenced.
2017 is the time for us to be the change we want to see in the world. Make your green New Year’s resolution part of the push for positive change. To stand for the planet, to stand against tyranny and hate, to stand for the oppressed, for the forgotten, and the voiceless. Let us all stand, and make 2017 the year of Hope. The Year of Love. The year we all finally realized the best within ourselves.
Looking for more tips to live a green life? How about a community full of people just like you to connect with? Sign up below to get your free seasonal living workbook, Wildwood Living. It’s filled with tips and guidance to help you live an authentic, green and seasonal life. Plus you’ll get access to The Wildwoods, a Facebook community of green living enthusiasts just like you!