How helpful would it be if we could start with a clean slate each year, so we could have all of the lessons learned, but none of the past mistakes and repercussions? While there is no way to do that, there is always hope that with dedication, commitment, and effort in the right direction, we can avoid repeating past mistakes and take steps for a better present and future. New year resolutions are small acts that showcase this hope and commitment we are capable of.
Many of us tend to make resolutions with a ‘New Year, New Me’ approach. It involves healthier habits and lifestyle choices, more organised or cleaner living, working towards personal goals, and other such promises that highlight a commitment towards a better life.
Given the heights of the climate crisis, there is no time like now to make more inclusive resolutions that help us live more eco-friendly and sustainable lives. Our commitment today may help create a healthier life for ourselves, as well as a better future for generations to come.
5 Simple New Year Resolutions For A Sustainable Lifestyle
- Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
The 3Rs are one of the simplest steps to introduce more eco-friendly practices into your life. Here is how you can break it down:
-> Reduce: You can start by auditing your lifestyle and the things that you consume. If you find yourself surrounded by things or habits that are not serving your best interests, it is time to declutter and eventually reduce.
-> Reuse: In the era of ‘haul culture’, it may be tempting to grab the next new thing hitting the shelves. Check if that value is served by things you already have. Most of us will find that there is a lot of forgotten stuff in the backs of our closets that we can bring back into use.
-> Recycle: Everything that goes into your trash can be disposed of better. Start by segregating your trash and recycling all that can be. Furthermore, if you are throwing away clothes, footwear, furniture, etc., check if it can be donated or upcycled to increase its life.
2. Practice mindfulness
If the term ‘mindfulness’ conjures an image of a peaceful person sitting against a serene backdrop, meditating, it is not entirely wrong. But mindfulness refers to more. Being mindful can be extended to all moments of life, small and big. It is about being present in the moment to fully be aware of yourself and the situation. This can help you make more conscious and responsible decisions, and help check impulses.
3. Eat a healthier, sustainable, and environment-friendly diet
This does not have to be a specific diet. But taking your mindfulness and 3Rs into consideration, you can arrive at a diet that suits your health as well as the planet. Some of the ways you can make your diet more eco-friendly include:
- Reducing your meat intake
- Reducing junk and processed foods
- Eating locally-grown and seasonal produce
- Ensure your food is properly stored
- Let you diet be inclusive, versatile, and vibrant
- Minimise the processing of your ingredients
Additionally, don’t be shy of sourcing from your farmer’s market, or local vendors. Carry your own bags when shopping. If possible, compost your kitchen waste, or dispose of it correctly. Making gradual but sure-footed changes is better than swaying between extremes.
4. Re-evaluate your transport choices
Your personal vehicle should end up as your source of climate guilt. There are ways that you can ensure it causes lesser harm to the environment. Opt for public transport, car-pooling, or walking the distance, whenever possible. This also helps you bring a change to your routine.
5. Educate and Share
Every step you take towards leading a more eco-friendly lifestyle will lead you to more things you can do. Keep an open mind and stay committed to the cause. Read, watch, and learn about ways to live better for the planet. Moreover, ensure you bring friends and family into the fold.
In the exciting air of the new year, many starry-eyed folks end up making mammoth resolutions that they soon find difficult to sustain. Instead, this is a good time to make meaningful changes, irrespective of how small they seem.
These are a few examples of resolutions that can help you help the environment. Do you have any more? What resolutions have you made this year?
I am a simple writer who wishes to use her skill to create more awareness about the planet that offers us life.