In a world where we only have to turn on the news to see the consequences of neglecting this marvellous planet, how do we develop and sustain an eco-friendly mindset?
For many of us, we have grown up in a life of consumerism and disposable culture. It can feel like an impossible task to shake off those old ways and rebirth ourselves as an eco-friendly ally.
Fostering an eco-friendly mindset is crucial to our success. Recycling that one yoghurt pot that time is not making a difference. Lifelong sustainable actions though? That’s a winner!
What do we mean by an “eco-friendly mindset”?
If you are someone with an eco-friendly mindset then you will be aware of the impact that your actions, and the products you purchase have on the world around you.
You will be able to recognise the steps you need to take to become more eco-friendly and will be passionate about sharing the process with others.
Once you have developed this mindset, with a bit of ongoing work, it will stick with you forever. You’ll make sustainable choices that last rather than quick “green” fixes.
Basically, you will want to help the planet and this feeling will motivate you every day. Does that sound good? It does to us!
What actions can you take?
Making changes to your life that are practical and helpful will help you establish your new eco-friendly mindset. Small changes add up to make a big difference.
Sort your recycling system. Honestly, make it as easy for you to recycle as you can. If recycling means that you have to go out in the cold to your wheelie bin, then you are not going to do it.
Create a system that works for you and then keep tweaking it until it is perfect. This could mean adding an extra bin or putting labels on the bins you have got. Whatever you need, do that!
The temptation to flip the heating on when the temperature drops can be huge. It’s about convenience though and you are choosing to push that button rather than walk upstairs for a thicker jumper and a pair of socks.
There are other ways to save energy though. You could use an airer to dry your clothes instead of tumble drying everything, or batch cook food to avoid using the oven over and over.
Creativity is your friend here. Think outside the box about the changes you can make. Start small at first and then build it up until you’ve got conserving energy down to a fine art.
Support eco-friendly businesses
Many large businesses are doing terrible things to our planet with hardly any consequences. As consumers we can act. We can spend our money on those items that support our ideals.
From local farm shops to online eco-friendly shops, you can support the business that are working to create the world you want to live in.
Think about transportation
All of us use some form of transportation. This could mean driving a car to work everyday or that flight to your next holiday destination.
Consider switching some of these journeys to an eco-friendlier version. Could you walk more or use public transport? Maybe instead of long-haul flight for your holiday switch to somewhere closer and take the train.
Top tips for achieving and maintaining an eco-friendly mindset
Make small incremental changes
No one goes from needing to empty their bin three times a week to being one of those people that can fit a year’s worth of rubbish into a jam jar. It takes small, baby steps to achieve that.
Like everything in life, you must learn. You’ll be changing the habits of a lifetime so be kind to yourself and take it slow.
It could be that you start off aiming to recycle all plastics, then you work on paper and glass. Once you’ve mastered that you can work on reducing your usage of these materials altogether.
Focus on the positives
It can feel like you are not doing enough. Eco-anxiety is a thing and we don’t want you to go there. Make sure that celebrate the small and the big eco-friendly changes that you make.
Any change that you make is better than none and that is fantastic. Be proud of that. Then work towards making changes in the next area of your life. Celebrate each step and stay positive.
Decide what you let into your life
One of the biggest secrets amongst eco-friendly types is that it is easier to make sustainable choices at the start than at the end. Let us explain. If you choose to buy bamboo cutlery rather than plastic, you’ll never have to worry about what you do with them when you are done.
If you minimise your expenditure on unnecessary stuff, you’ll have less to throw away too. Making these choices may seem hard but it will be easier in the long run.
Inspire the next generation
Talk about your journey with others and get your kids on board. Not only will it help keep you accountable, but it will inspire others too.
The best bit about this is that you will be able to celebrate their eco-friendly successes as your own. You helped them get there so well done you.
Avoid the green trend
What do we mean by this? Well, if we were talking about corporations, we’d call it greenwashing. The act of pretending to be “green” but making no effort at all.
You can do this as an individual too. You can buy a fancy water bottle because you want to look good, but you still buy your coffee in a disposable cup.
Obviously, you’re not perfect. Neither are we. Essentially, it boils down to your motivations. Are you making these changes because you want to make a difference to the future of our planet? Or are you doing it because everyone else is?
Are you ready to adopt an eco-friendly mindset?
The trick here is sustainability. You want to make changes that you can stick at and have a lasting impact. Think long-term and you’ll be halfway there.
Everyone can achieve an eco-friendly mindset. Start today and this time next year you’ll be look back at how far you’ve come.