9 Habits of Highly Effective Eco-Friendly People

 

Practical tips to start your journey toward becoming more eco-friendly.

There are many companies, products, and campaigns that claim to be sustainable and eco-friendly. They say they're kind to the environment, greener-than green itself, and more. 

However, sometimes knowing how you can make a difference as an individual can be hard.

Going Green means different things to different people, and that’s ok. Perhaps you want to be more eco-friendly but just aren’t sure what to do. Here are some tips you can use to make your life more eco-friendly.

 


 

#1 Try Clean Eating

Clean eating can have a positive effect on both the environment and on your own personal health.

Over the past couple of years, the word vegan has been growing in popularity. 

Even fast-food restaurants now advertise the fact they have vegan items on their menus. Going heavy on the plants in your meals isn’t just about being eco-friendly; it comes with a ton of other benefits too. It’s highly nutritious; it can also help to improve the health of your heart and other vital organs, not to mention being a proven way to control both your cholesterol and your weight. 

Clean Eating is actually quite easy. 

Here are 7 tips you can use to start eating clean.

  1. Choose whole or natural foods. 
  2. Avoid processed foods.
  3. Choose unrefined over refined foods.
  4. Include Carbs, Protein, and Fat in every meal – balance is key.
  5. Avoid Sugar and Salt wherever possible.
  6. Watch what you drink – specialty coffees and soda can add hundreds if not thousands of calories per day!
  7. Spread out your eating, don’t overload your body.

 


 

#2 Practice Clean Living 

Clean living something that lots of people take for granted, but simple, small changes can all start to add up. 

First, Clean living has nothing to do with having a tidy house! Although clean living is somewhat related to the first section about clean eating, there’s a lot more to this than meets the eye!

Here’s 11 ideas to start a life of cleaner living today:

  1. Drink plenty of water, eight glasses each day where possible.
  2. Don’t eat foods that come in a box.
  3. Focus on using natural and eco-friendly products – in your bathroom, your kitchen, and anywhere else!
  4. Use reusable bags for your shopping.
  5. Do not reheat food in plastic containers unless they are BPA-free.
  6. Buy a reusable coffee cup and water bottle.
  7. Reduce your food waste – use your freezer to freeze any fresh products before they go bad.
  8. Compost your leftover food.
  9. Use an electric or safety razor instead of disposal razors.
  10. Don’t overuse your bathroom products, like shampoos and such. Here’s a useful guide to how much you should be using – the findings might surprise you!
  11. Make a homemade cleaning product for your kitchen and bathroom.

 


 

#3 Be Eco-Social

You don’t have to be eco-friendly alone...you can be eco-social!

With a quick search online for local eco-friendly group and communities will turn-up a ton of results and in many cases, events too. These don’t always need to be physical meetups; they could be online groups or forums. With rising concerns over our oceans, people across the world are coming together to help clean up our beaches and coastal areas. Attending a local beach clean is easy, and it’s a great way to meet like-minded people while helping to do some good. 

A good example of a place that is already doing this can be found across the pond, in the UK. The Marine Conservation Society is just one example of an organization that host an annual beach clean in their local area. Further afield in Spain, there is the Clean Beach Initiative

In the states, we have hundreds of the same types of initiatives happening across the coastal areas and inland too. An organization called the Volunteer Clean-up provides you with a centralized resource for such events taking place. Take a look and see if there is something happening near you soon. 

If you live in an area that has nothing going on right now, why not create an event for yourself? Take a leap and become a local pioneer for a greener cleaner community!

 


 

#4 Talk About Your ‘Why’ – Inspire Others

You might not realize just how much of an impact you can have on the people around you. 

Whether it’s your friends, family, or even your colleagues, make sure they understand the reasons behind any changes you are making in your life. 

Be proud of what you’re doing! 

A passionate person has the ability to inspire without even knowing it. For every person you talk to, just planting that seed and giving them a reason to think differently can help to invoke a wave of change in others. 

 


 

#5 Make Your Home More Efficient  

There are many ways you can make simple, small adjustments in your home to reduce your carbon footprint.

It goes without saying, that by leaving the lighting on when it’s not needed or having lights on during the daytime, this uses a lot of additional energy that should have otherwise been conserved. 

Here are some practical switches you can make around the home to become a greener household: 

  • Switch out your old lightbulbs for LED equivalents.
  • Take a shower instead of a bath.
  • Hang your clothes outside rather than using a dryer.
  • Consider solar panels, over their life; you will get a return for the investment.
  • Switch off devices that are not being used instead of leaving them on standby.
  • Consider secondary or double glazing for your windows.
  • Reseal the areas around your doors and window frames.
  • Add insulation to your home.

 


 

#6 Avoid Plastics

Without a doubt, you will be aware of the impact that single-use plastics are having on our planet.

A simple way to help is to avoid single-use plastics altogether.  

  • Bring your own reusable bags to the store.
  • Say no to plastic straws.
  • Try to buy fresh produce that is not pre-packaged in plastic.
  • Use a reusable water bottle. 
  • Buy a water filter for your house instead of buying bottled water from the store.

 


 

#7 Recycle

Recycle as much as you can. 

You can recycle so much more than your paper, glass, and card; you can also recycle your food waste to make compost, or in some cases, to grow new vegetables or use as a tasty stock. 

As the old saying goes, one person’s trash is another person’s treasure! So, go easy on the items you get rid of. The second-hand economy is thriving; make sure you take advantage of this!

  • Turn your old food waste into compost.
  • Make vegetable stock from the leftover stalks of any veggies.
  • Regrow your veggies from scraps – you can do this without a garden! Get inspiration here. 
  • Repurpose any type of containers. 
  • Don’t throw away old linens; instead, use them again as cleaning rags.
  • But remanufactured toners and ink.
  • Recycle any old technology – don’t just throw it away. Look here for info on how to do this.
  • Buy rechargeable batteries instead of standard batteries.

 


 

#8 Walk or Ride a Bike

One of the most significant impacts a person can make on their carbon footprint is to re-think their transportation choices. 

On a global scale, the impact of transportation is immense. Closer to home, there are smaller changes that we can all make that will reduce our collective carbon footprint. Here’s just a few to get you started!

  • Walk more – If your journey takes less than 10 minutes, then try to cycle or walk.
  • Cycle more – Great for the environment and your health, not to mention it’s cheaper too.
  • Drive less – As above, if you are making lots of short journeys, you could benefit from walking or cycling these routes instead. 
  • Vacation in the US, AKA – Staycation! Travel somewhere you can reach without taking a flight.
  • Carpool.
  • If you can, work from home a couple of days a week. If your company values sustainability, they might just go for it!
  • Buy an electric vehicle and use solar energy to charge it.

 


 

#9 Shop Local 

Shopping local is a great way to have a positive impact on the environment.

It might seem like the normal thing to do when you hop in the car and drive to your nearest Walmart. But the truth is, by shopping outside the local area, you are using excess fuel that could otherwise be saved, and your carbon footprint is magnified when you support the larger players in the food market chains. 

  • Go to your local farmers market.
  • Join a community garden to contribute to making future food for you to consume.
  • Support local small businesses.
  • Eat with the seasons and enjoy your regions local produce.
  • Host a local clean-up or talk to others in your community about the importance of being eco-friendly.
  • Use local repair shops, not those houses in giant superstores.
  • Try to use stores that have sustainability and ethical practices.

 


 

How to Get Started?

Making any adjustments can be difficult, especially when there are so many possibilities. 

Try starting with whatever feels right for you. 

What do you feel passionate about? Where do you feel you can contribute to the greater good? 

Contrary to popular myth, being green doesn’t necessarily mean you have to wear baggy clothes, do yoga, and never eat meat again. It’s about making a contribution, being thoughtful, and trying your best for yourself, the planet, and the people around you. 

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