Blog by Maddy: We’re in a climate crisis. People are concerned and want to help – but most are either hesitant to make changes or don’t know where to start.
Everyone gets stuck in their ways due to convenience or old habit. Is there something you do that you know you should stop doing – but have a hard time changing your ways? For example, are you still buying and drinking out of plastic water bottles? Investing in a reusable one is much cheaper in the long run and prevents your car from becoming an empty water bottle wasteland. But cutting the cord from the convenience and habit of water bottles can be a challenge.
Change is hard! It can be much easier when you make mini-goals and change one thing at a time. There are many easy ways to live a more sustainable lifestyle that can quickly become a new normal, and will likely save you time and money. Here are sustainable swaps you can make in your daily routine that will make a big impact on our environment for the better.
Buying in bulk
Rushing to get to work in the morning calls for on-the-go breakfasts, which include things like granola bars, protein bars and yogurts. The problem with these types of foods is that they are all individually wrapped. These one-use items add so much waste to our environment without us even noticing. So instead of buying individual cups of yogurt, try buying the larger container size. This will not only save you money, but it will help the environment too. This is also great for making your own to-go yogurt bowls. Using your own container leaves more room for delicious toppings that wouldn’t fit in the individual sized cups! You can also use a reusable glass container and load-up with granola, nuts and seeds (which can also be bought in bulk).
Another sustainable swap would be to make your own granola and protein bars instead of buying the pre-packaged ones. There are so many simple recipes all over the Internet that will taste way better than anything store-bought and will be much cheaper. Not to mention, they are so much healthier!
Swapping out your toothbrush and toothpaste.
A bamboo toothbrush and eco-friendly toothpaste are great swaps from the typical plastic toothbrush and name-brand toothpaste.
The bamboo handle is completely biodegradable or can be recycled if the bristles are removed. Along with switching your toothbrush, trying an eco-friendly toothpaste can have a big impact on not only our environment, but our health too. Toothpaste may not seem like it has an environmental impact because it’s used in such small amounts at a time. Think about how much toothpaste is used as a population every day. The chemicals that go into traditional toothpastes are washed down the drain and go into our Earth’s waterways and our bodies. Switching to an organic or eco-friendly toothpaste is an easy and affordable way to reduce our waste.
Another tip is to be conscious of how much water you’re using. Things like leaving the shower on for long periods of time before you get in or letting the water run while you brush your teeth are just simple habit changes you can make to reduce water waste.
Packing a lunchbox
First things first, the key word in the phrase above is lunchbox! Using a reusable lunchbox instead of brown paper bags is a simple way to reduce waste. Now you also have a reason to buy a super cute lunchbox to bring to work with you every day. What goes into that lunchbox is also important for our environment. Pack snacks and sandwiches in reusable silicone bags, and pack salads, soups, etc. in glass containers. Glass containers last much longer than Tupperware and do much better in the dishwasher as well. Along with your lunch, don’t forget your reusable water bottle!
The key to getting started is to be aware. Be aware of how much waste you’re really producing. How many napkins do you really need to take from the napkin dispenser? Can you use a regular towel instead of a paper towel? Once you are aware of how much you’re using, you’ll make more of an effort to stop and reduce that waste.
Other ideas like packing leftovers in glass containers instead of plastic bags, using reusable grocery bags at the grocery store, taking public transportation when possible are just a few practices that will have a positive impact on our environment.
Every little change matters. When everyone does their part, it makes a huge impact!