Old habits die hard, they say. Every day human activity causes further damage to the environment, planet's resources and disrupts the delicate balance between nature, animals and humans. In addition to that, we stand in front of climate change, deforestation, air pollution, loss of biodiversity and many other huge threats. And there is also this uncertain voice in our heads whispering "do something". But how do we start with this green living?
Building new habits is not easy and doesn't happen overnight. It's a process that takes courage and patience to build up confidence and understand the impact of the steps we take. If you want to become more eco-friendly in your daily life, you should start with taking those baby steps now and learn as you go!
We at moincoins want to help you smooth down the struggle towards the green lifestyle. That is why we've rounded up for you some simple tips and hints on how you can go green at home, at work and generally in your everyday life. Take a notepad, list the ones you feel you can handle this month and start seeing a change. Let's begin!
Start sorting your household waste into trash and recyclables. It becomes super easy when you memorise the initials: P.P.M.G. or plastic-paper-metals-glass. These are recyclable materials like rigid plastic packaging and bottles, paper and cardboard, cereal or snack cardboard boxes, magazines, junk mail, office paper, newspaper, tin, aluminium, and steel cans, glass jars, wine and beer bottles. All of those can and should be recycled!
Pay attention to what you cannot put in your bin! The most common mistakes take place with plastic shopping bags, egg cartons, drinking cups, broken glass, soiled paper products and food containers that weren't properly cleaned.
Did you know that according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, 30% to 40% of the food supply in the US is wasted? Buying an extra amount of food without consuming it is not just a huge waste of potential meals and money, but it also adds up to the amount of CO2 that is being created in landfills.
Consider composting as an alternative too! If you feel like estimating the exact amount of food you will need for a week doesn't work for you, think about buying a composter. This way you can create natural fertilizer out of fruits, vegetables, eggshells, coffee grounds and filters, tea bags, nutshells and more!
Think about the packaging! Those plastic bags are literally everywhere now, and it takes forever for them to dissolve. The best thing you can do is choose to shop at one of the zero-waste stores that sell unpackaged food. But again, if switching from your favorite supermarket to a new shop is not an option for you, then just try making a better choice in the place you like shopping for your groceries. Most stores offer unpackaged fruits and vegetables, that you can also put in your eco-friendly bag. Choose food in cans and cardboard boxes over plastic packaging, as those first two options are widely recyclable.
Water and energy consumption are also something to review when willing to create a greener home! You most probably heard how precious water is, so why not start appreciating it more by taking a shorter shower already today?
Remember to close the water faucet while brushing your teeth, washing your face or hands. You can also install a water flow restrictor that will stop the flow after a certain time. It will cost you a little money but it will make a great change!
Be more responsible with energy consumption too. Since energy conservation is one of the most important things you can do to reduce your carbon footprint, put a sticky note on your desk to remind yourself to switch off all unnecessary devices and appliances during the night.
Another thing you can do is a small investment in LED energy-saving light bulbs. Those are the know-how that will save up to 75% of energy for the planet and will lower your monthly electricity bills! What's more, they're available in a wide range of brightness and designs so you can really match it to the style or needs of your house. That sounds like a win-win situation, right?
We’re all spending more time at home these days, so we should also be more thoughtful about the products we use to clean our spaces.
Unfortunately, most of the popular cleaning products we’re using contain a lot of harmful chemicals and therefore are not environmentally friendly. Do a small research and you will find some brands that are working towards naturally derived, non-toxic, and biodegradable cleaning products.
Repairing something is more environmentally friendly and also more creative than simply throwing things away.
There are many online tools and platforms, like Pinterest where you can take amazing DIY ideas to reuse furniture, gadgets or other stuff that seems old-fashioned and outmoded for your house.
Also search for YouTubers, sites and blogs that will inspire you. And last but not least - believe in yourself: you can fix almost everything around you!
Documents, receipts, junk mail, newspapers, bills. These can be totally replaced by the amazing process of digitalization!
Say no to receipts or ask your partners to send them electronically next time. Start using e-signatures to sign documents and ask energy, mobile or internet providers to send you the bills via email. You will be impressed by how many things you can replace with a digital version!
Ecosia is a legitimate green search engine, like Google, but this one is actually planting trees while you search the web! It’s a transparent search engine that publishes its monthly financial reports, so you can see exactly where the income from your searches goes.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency of the US, the transportation sector generates the largest share of greenhouse gas emission. Most of these emissions come from private vehicles, like cars, trucks or minivans.
You can easily reduce your personal carbon footprint by trying alternatives ways to commute. Walking (if possible), biking or even using public transportation could be the next good habit of yours. It benefits not only the planet but also you, as you get to have more time for exercise or book reading while travelling to work.
Have you ever thought about how many of the products you buy are packaged in single-use plastic? If not, here are some crazy numbers! Research has shown that we produce 300 million tons (!) of plastic each year worldwide, half of which stands for single-use items.
We don’t say that you have to replace everything at once! But you can start with small daily habits, like your supermarket shopping! Plastic bags for example are non-recyclable, but they're definitely replaceable with those fancy cloth bags that you can put in your handbag or backpack.
Plastic straws, cotton swabs and toothbrushes can also be replaced by eco alternatives made of bamboo or other sustainable materials. Remember to add to your starter list a reusable water bottle.
At moincoins, you will find plenty of eco brands offering a great variety of eco-friendly stuff like the above-mentioned. Some of them could be also customized with your name or favorite design.
No worries, you don't need to go vegan tomorrow. Think about this globally. If the majority of people cuts down meat consumption to a couple of times per month, that will make a real change! And it's not just about the ethical aspect of things, animal agriculture is one of the main causes of many environmental problems we face right now. If you haven't seen that Cowspiracy movie yet, now is the time. You can download it from the official Cowspiracy project website or watch it on Netflix.
Try supporting your local farmers too. Check out when and where the market is taking place and just go for it. Lower-scale food agriculture tends to be more kind to the Earth.
Organic, sustainable, cruelty-free, fair-trade, vegan - you know these terms, don't you? If you feel a little lost with that eco terms, we've got you covered with our blog post that explains many of those green words in detail.
It's generally worth trying to use organic skincare products since it’s always better for your skin and the planet! You can explore a bunch of environmentally conscious beauty retailers that also deliver your products in ecologically-friendly packaging and promise amazing results for slowing down the ageing process, deep hydration or natural make-up looks!
That’s a good question to ask yourself before you go shopping next time. At first, you can try to reduce the number of clothes you buy. It takes a lot of energy, materials and countless resources to produce new items. Secondly, bear in mind that everything has a second life! There are plenty of clothing items in your wardrobe that could be taken to the tailor for repair or given second-hand to someone who can still find them useful.
This doesn't mean that you have to completely spare yourself of the pleasure shopping brings you. If you are in a shopping mood and want to buy some new stuff, try to look for quality, durability, ethically processes and sustainable materials this time.
It will take you only a few seconds to learn more about the background of each brand and the change you can make by that is invaluable.
There are many external sources, like Good on You, which is a sustainable and ethical evaluation rating platform that can help you make better and more eco-conscious shopping decisions. At moincoins, we are experts in eco brands and deals. If you feel ready enough to make the change, choose to shop using one of the eco deals we've hand-picked for you.
Making small steps at a time will help you adopt small green habits every month. And with time, you'll be really proud of the whole new green lifestyle you created for yourself.
Adopt your personal slogan for the first efforts, like recycle-repair-reuse and start bringing all these tips into life. Small steps day by day. And who knows, maybe soon it won't feel like an effort anymore.