How to be More Eco-Friendly in your Day to Day Life
As a society, we are constantly becoming more and more aware of potential damages to the environment and as a result we are regularly seeking out new ways to reduce our carbon footprint a little. Whether that’s switching your lightbulbs to an LED alternative, going paperless with your energy bills or bank statements or even re-using your Tesco carrier bag, little subtle changes in our day to day lives can really make a big difference to the quality of our environment. Not only this, but you may also find that you benefit financially as well as just feeling generally better physically and mentally. Want to help but not sure how? Here are a few ways you can do your bit to help keep our eco system healthy!
Grow your Own Food
Admittedly, this is a very sweeping statement and of course, not everyone has acres of farmland on which they can live a completely sustainable lifestyle. However, even in small gardens there is the opportunity to grow a little fruit and veg which is not only helping the environment, it is also delicious, nutritious and readily available – not to mention great fun once you get the hang of it! Packets of seeds for fruit such as tomatoes can be bought at any garden centre and once they are planted you can begin the excitement of watching them grew. There is definitely nothing more satisfying than enjoying a delicious meal that is not only home cooked – but home grown too!
Walk or Cycle!
This is definitely an age old piece of advice when it comes to ways to help the environment, but one that still stands! We are stuck in a society where driving everywhere has become the norm. It is easy to see why, it is quick, convenient and easy. But how many journeys are you completing in the car that could be done using other means? How far away from home do you work? Would it be possible to walk or cycle? Even if you take the train to work, could you walk or cycle to the station instead of drive? Not only will becoming more active benefit the environment, it will also positively impact your physical health.
Have a Clear Out
There is nothing better than having a good old de-clutter from time to time. Just as the saying goes, clear space means a clear mind, and if you allow all kinds of junk to build up in your home, you are likely not doing your stress levels any favours. A good way to tackle hoarded items is to start with your wardrobe. Take a look at the clothes inside and pick out anything you haven’t worn in over a year. Ask yourself if you’re likely to wear it again. If the answer is no, then chuck it. It’s as simple as that. In order to help the environment, make sure you dispose of your clothes responsibly. Organisations such as Freecycle will allow you to exchange goods with others and they will not simply dispose of any unwanted items, they will recycle them. Check out Freecycle as an alternative to the likes of eBay and Gumtree.
Reduce your Food Waste
It is quite shocking the amount of food that is wasted by the average household in the UK and there are so many simple ways of preventing wastage and making sure that your weekly shop lasts just that little bit longer. Batch cooking big one-pot dishes such as spaghetti Bolognese or vegetable curries and freezing it will mean you always have something homemade and nutritious available. If you’re making a stir fry for the whole family – why not put the leftovers in a Tupperware and take it to the office for lunch? Don’t throw away fruit and vegetables that are past their use-by dates either – they are likely still ok to eat – why not boil veggies with stock and blend for a delicious soup? Mash up over-ripe bananas for a hearty banana loaf? Or freeze blueberries for a cool and refreshing smoothie? Next time, before throwing food away, consider whether there are any uses for it first!
Still today, there is a slight stigma that surrounds buying goods second hand and many people avoid doing it before they have even tried it. Charity shops only stock good quality items and if you don’t like the fact that someone else has worn something – then simply give it a quick wash! You can find some really great quality items in the likes of Oxfam, from clothes shoes and bags to furniture and electronics. The best thing about buying furniture second hand is that you get the opportunity to buy some really great, one off statement pieces for pennies. Re-working them is also a fun challenge if you want to put your own stamp on it! Shopping in charity shops also means you are helping a great cause – guilt free shopping? Where do we sign?!