I can still remember painstakingly picking out my outfit the night before March 17th when I was in elementary school. I always wanted to wear a visible amount of green in the perfect shade. After all, I didn’t want to be pinched because someone claimed that I was only wearing teal. I kept the practice up through high school and possibly even through college. As I have grown older, I definitely have become less intentional about wearing green on St Patrick’s Day. Some days I am lucky to remember what day of the week it is, much less the date on the calendar.
The same can be true about saving the planet. While there are a few exceptions, for the most part people desire to make the world a better place. At first, we may painstakingly plan ways to be more environmentally conscious. Yet quickly our goals can be pushed aside in the midst of trying to just keep up with life. I hope these tips that follow will make being “green” easier without the accompanying pinch.
1. Make conscious choices. I know I am guilty of going through life on automatic pilot and relying on my routine. Just being more aware will help make a difference. One example is with conserving water. Turn off the faucet when you are brushing your teeth. Only fill the sink full of soapy water when you have that many dishes, rather than just washing one or two. Use a refillable water bottle rather than plastic ones, and then actually drink the water. Both you and the planet will be healthier on that one.
2. Transition. Sometimes we go gung ho into a project and can actually set ourselves up for failure. Starting a compost pile, 15 separate recycling bins and trying to bike 10 miles to and from work will not be sustainable if you try to start them all at once. Start with realistic expectations. Start with one project at a time.
3. Pay for help. Just as your garbage is picked up for collection, in many communities recyling can be picked up the same way. Often you do not even have to sort the items by type. Although this option may not work if you live in a remote location, you could team up with four of your neighbors. If each of you take turns once a month bringing the recycling to town, the task is less daunting.
4. Accessibility. How difficult is your system? If you have to climb two sets of stairs to recycle one pop can, you might just chose to pitch the can in the garbage. While most kitchens do not have space for a complete recycling center, you could definitely stick a small plastic tub under the sink or in the pantry. Simply put all of your glass and aluminum inside, then carry it to your recycling bins every few days. Or more often if you actually cook at home. 🙂
5. Be informed. Getting ready to make a larger purchase? Research which products are better for the environment, then buy those. You can read up on the issues affecting the environment on the Environmental Protection Agency‘s site. Although the agency just came out with their safer choice labeling system, you will not find Norwex products on their list. Why? For one reason, Norwex would not want to be identified with many of the companies that the EPA considers to be “safe.”
By the way, in case you missed it, Norwex does have a WHOLE line of home AND personal care products that are created with the protection of the environment in mind. I would be glad to tell you about all of the options available if you contact me. Together we can avoid the pinch of being green.
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!