Let’s be honest here for a minute, being environmentally friendly is hardly selfless. Without the planet, we’re dead! So we are looking out for ourselves, plain and simple.
As a collective group of humans however, we are pretty crappy to our planet. We almost always choose things that are convienient for ourselves in the moment, but incredibly harmful for us down the road. The amount of things sent to a landfill by ONE family per day is alarming! So what can we do?! Well there’s 10 very simple ways you can make a huge difference right now.
- Get yourself some reusable grocery and produce bags! Seriously, those plastic bags are the biggest waste of space ever. I mean to start with the bag boy seems to think you need a hundred. Then you get home put all your groceries away, turn around and your kitchen table is piled high with these stupid bags! What do you do with them now? Oh right, shove them into a dark corner of your pantry and hope someday to find a use for them. So go out and get some reuseable grocery bags. It makes life so much easier.
- Unless you live in a place that does not have clean water. There is no reason to purchase plastic water bottles! Get yourself a good reuseable water bottle and you’re good to go. The problem with these, is yes you may recycle them, but many people do not, and on top of it if you are out and about and toss in a public trash can guess what? That’s not getting recycled either!
- Which brings me to my third one, how many of you go to your favorite coffee shop monthly, weekly, daily? Yes, those disposable cups count as well! You might think you’re off the hook if you buy hot coffee in a paper cup, well you aren’t HAH! Those “paper” cups are lined with plastic, and they obviously come with a plastic lid. Just bring your own coffee or tea mug. It’s easy trust me! Plus most places will give you a discount if you bring your own cup.
- Okay the one most people don’t want to hear, plastic silverware. Now if you purchase it for a party its not as bad because you can wash and reuse those. But fast food places do not. So just keep some small reuseable silverware in your pocket or your bag. East peasy!
- Yay! The halfway point. So everyone knows that the animal farming industry is the leading cause of damaging our environment. I mean animals poop like 5 times as much as humans, which contaminates water ways and crops, they take A LOT of water, and all the antibiotics that gets pumped into them has been linked to many of our super bugs, yippie. So what can we do to stop this? Eat less animal products! The average american eats 3 times as much animal products that is healthy for us. So tone it down, and explore the wonderful world of whole grains and fresh produce.
- Now, about those super bugs. They definitely aren’t good for us people! The factory farming industry is awful to those animals. We need to treat them with the respect they deserve. So research where your meat and dairy comes from. Make sure that they are given a good life, fed what they are intended to eat, given adequate space, and only given medicine when they actually need it.
- Composting is seriously the best! If you have a garden you are definitely going to want to do this. I don’t have time to explaine how to actually do it. But there are so many different ways that you can! Composting reduces waste and enriches the soil. So there many be a composting center in your city or you can do it by yourself at home.
- Now the last way to reduce your waste footprint, is actually really simple. When you run out of something try to find something with cleaner ingredients, reuseable, compostable, or recyclable materials.
Now please don’t throw out all your disposable products in your home and go out and purchase all new economically friendly products. It’s a slow process, use up what you have and find a better solution. And remember this isn’t a selfless act of kindness. This benefits you as well. If you would like to do your own research (which I highly recommend you do) its super easy these days. Take to Netflix! There’s some awesome documentaries, to name a few, Pastic Island, Cowspiracy, Global Waste, Sustainable, GMO OMG, and so much more!
If you are an avid cleaner like I am, then you probably cringe when you see how much you actually spend on cleaning products every month. Or if you are really like me, you’ve stopped checking! The truth about cleaning products is, they’re expensive, they get used up way too fast, and it seems that you need a billion of them! Why do we need a different spray, foam, or cream for every surface of our house? Well, the truth is we don’t. In fact on 80% of surfaces in your home you only have to use one. AND you probably already have all the ingredients for it!
I used to spend so much money on shower cleaner, toilet cleaner, kitchen counter cleaner, stainless steel cleaner, tile cleaner, the list could go on and on. Now I only use one, and it costs me a fraction of what I used to spend! Plus it only takes me 2 minutes to make it.
Now, do you want to know the secret of my miracle multipurpose cleaner? It’s so simple I promise it’s going to blow your mind.
• Fill half a spray bottle with filtered water
• One cup of white vinegar
• One tablespoon of baking soda
• One tablespoon of dish soap
• Essential oil of your choice for pleasant scent
The filtered water dilutes it, the vinegar is a great degreaser, the baking soda is a mild abrasive, the soap fights bacteria, and the essential makes everything smell sooo good! Now go save yourself, time, money, and make your home a more natural place.
Okay, we all know that feeling of walking out of a grocery store and having that pit in our stomach. We know we spent far too much money and the cloud of self loathing begins to set in.
But! Believe it or not, there are some ways we can walk out of that store feeling like we just conquered those aisles and, our bank accounts will surely thank us! I have gathered 5 easy ways we can all save the next time we enter the supermarket.
1. MEAL PLAN. If you want to shop once a week or every two weeks, make a meal plan that will last you until your next trip to the store. This will save you those “mini trips” that occur when you are making dinner and realize you are missing half the ingredients for the meal! So before your trip to the store sit down and write out what meals you will be preparing and what ingredients are needed for each meal. This way there is no mystery.
2. MAKE A LIST. I can’t stress this enough, make your list and take it with you! If you don’t do this I can almost promise you that you are, buying things you don’t need, forgetting things that you do need, and spending way more money than you need to be spending.
3. CASH IS BEST. Before you head to the store with that debit card with the idea of a budget in your mind, stop and think about this. If your budget is $50 but you get up to the register and it says $66 you might think “Oh well, I’ll hit my budget next time.” And hand over that debit card, BUT if you only had that $50 cash you will be forced to say to the cashier “Hm I don’t have enough, lets put back the onions and the face wash please.” So remember next time you go to the store, cash is best.
4. GET IN AND GET OUT. When grocery shopping do not take your time! Find what is on your list then get the hell out of there. The longer you are in there, the more sale signs and the more temptation you will have to buy the things that are not on your list. So follow your list and get out of there!
5. STAY OUT OF THE MIDDLE. Try to purchase as much fresh stuff as possible. This way you stick to the perimeter of the store and are not seeing all the sweet and salty treats that lurk in the middle of the store. Giving into temptation with these items can rack up your grocery bill, not to mention can add pounds to your body. So all in all it is best to stick to the outskirts of the store where there is fresh fruits, veggies, dairy, meat and whole grains!
I hope these 5 simple steps create a better shopping experience for you, they surely did for me.