Let’s face it. When it comes to being environmentally-conscious, we’re all guilty of a few sins. We may take long showers, or leave the lights and fans on when leaving a room, or compulsively buy things we don’t need. Whatever it is, we’re all doing it. However, in our fear to commit to a completely sustainable lifestyle, we end up looking over the little, simple, practical habits, that when added up, could make a positive impact to the planet.
So how does one get on the path of sustainable living, without drastically altering their life? Without skimping over little luxuries and conveniences? Read on for real, easy, doable tips to go green.
1. Do away with one-use plastic products
Swap your plastic spoons, cups, and plates with stainless steel ones. Just wash them after use. Yes, even when travelling! Or use cutlery made of bamboo, areca nut, and other similar biodegradable materials. Similarly, refuse the plastic straw offered at restaurants, juice bars and at coconut stalls, and just carry a straw made of steel or bamboo. They come with their own little brush, so cleaning them is super easy!
2. Carry your own water bottle
Stop buying plastic bottles. Seriously, this can’t be stressed enough. Plastic bottles make up one of the biggest components in dumping grounds. It’s also the one habit that’s easiest to change. Repurpose old glass bottles to drink from when at home. Also, use a little flask to carry water around, and refill it wherever you get a chance—restaurants, offices, railway stations. Your planet will definitely thank you for it!
3. Refuse freebies you don’t need
Hotel toiletries, airplane kits, goodie bags, t-shirts and giveaways at events, gifts, souvenirs, mementos…the list of free stuff we’re given is endless. But do we really need that one more little bottle of shampoo? Or that eye mask when we already own three? Before practicing the 3R’s—reduce, reuse, recycle—cut down on the waste we generate by Refusing things we have no use for.
4. Smarter ways of commuting
Pollution is one of the biggest environmental stressors. But it doesn’t have to be. All we need is a little mindfulness about the way we commute every day. Carpooling, sharing cabs, using public transport wherever possible, and walking over short distances— these are just some ways to reduce our carbon footprint and make it easier on the environment.
5. Practice minimalism
One good rule of thumb to reduce wastage: Don’t buy products until you finish what you already have. For example, until you finish using your face cream, don’t buy another one. This would mean you avoid over-consumption, and actually finish using the entire product. Plus, there’s little chance of crossing the expiry date (which is what happens when you have too many of the same product).
These are just some of the ways we can do our bit for the planet. Do you have any other tips? Please share with us in the comments below!
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