Would you like to be more eco-friendly, more green, more earth friendly, whatever you want to call it, you’ve decided you’re ready to make some changes. Now you’re looking for the going green for beginners handbook, right?
Where do you start? How do you start?
Do You Have What it Takes to Go Green
Before you even get started and jump in with both feet, slow your roll a minute, going green isn’t for the faint of heart.
I don’t say this to discourage you, I say it to caution you.
If you truly want to start doing things like recycling, reducing waste, reducing or eliminating harsh chemicals, you need to do a little planning first.
Going green is going to require you to be more thoughtful and conscious of your purchases and more patient – our society is very much fast and easy – we want convenience and we want it now, right!?!
Going green for beginners can be totally overwhelming. You want to do it all and do it perfectly. I can tell you from experience, there is no concrete definition of perfect when it comes to living a green lifestyle. I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase, you do you, embrace that!
I should also tell you, if you’re a perfectionist and think you can’t get started until you can ‘go green’ perfectly, get past it and jump in.
I’d also venture to guess you’re probably already at least even just a bit green.
Why Do You Want to Go Green
Why do YOU want to go green? Many people simply fall into ‘living a green lifestyle’ just based on their habits.
RELATED: What is Green Living
Do you live in a big city and walk to work because it’s exercise or it gives you some time by yourself?
Did someone in your family recently receive a concerning health diagnosis that could be linked to environmental toxins or chemicals in the products they use?
Have you been doing more online shopping because of the Covid pandemic and are more in-tune with packaging that can’t be recycled?
Do you have a garage full of crap that’s useless but throwing it away seems wasteful?
Are you getting take out from a restaurant rather than dining in and now you’ve got styrofoam containers stacking up and you’re wondering where it all goes?
RELATED: How to Dispose of Styrofoam
Benefits of Going Green
There are plenty of benefits to going green, among them are saving money, protecting natural resources, being healthier, improving air quality, reducing pollution, preventing climate change, protect the planet for future generations, etc.
RELATED: How to Improve Indoor Air Quality
Does Going Green Save Money
The answer is almost always yes however, you need to look at the long game. Saving money can be one of the big benefits to going green.
In many cases, a higher investment up front results in an overall lower monetary cost and lower impact on the environment in many ways.
Everything from buying in bulk or a larger package size may cost more now but the overall cost per unit is lower as is the amount of product packaging material.
Buying a reusable product is always going to cost more than a single use product but not only will that reusable product last much longer, it is better for the environment. Natural resources are protected and pollution is reduced.
Implement some of my tips below and you’ll see a reduction in your utility bills.
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How To Start Going Green at Home
Home is the best place to start. Get comfortable in your ‘new lifestyle’ there and then tackle other areas of your life.
Start slow. Don’t assume that going green requires you to go out and buy a bunch of new products and change your entire lifestyle. Slow and steady wins the race. Use up what you have before you buy new.
Decide on your goals. Getting started can be overwhelming but make a small list of things you want to tackle first, why are those important to you?
If you’re looking to start small, I recommend looking at a bundle box like this Zero Waste Gift Box from Earth Hero, it gives you swaps for several single use items that you may use at home or on the go. It would also make a great gift for someone just starting out on their green living journey.
What Can You Do Today
Just a few ideas to get you started:
- Start recycling – contact your trash hauler to see if they have a program or check your local community government page for the closest facility.
- Opt out of catalogs – www.catalogchoice.org
- Switch to electronic bill pay
- Carpool when possible
- Walk instead of drive
- Turn off lights when you leave a room
- Unplug appliances when not in use
- Turn down your thermostat in winter and turn it up in the summer
Y’all, going green doesn’t have to be hard but it’s as hard as we make it. Remember, progress takes time, perfection isn’t the goal and only you define your success. Everyone has different life circumstances, different goals, different challenges, etc. Don’t run someone else’s race, run your own.