The start of the year is often a time to consider how we can make some positive changes to our health, happiness and overall lifestyle.
One of my main aims for 2021 (along with survival) is to make a conscious effort toward more sustainable choices, opting for sustainability over convenience when possible.
Of course, when it comes to making these sustainable swaps, we need to be realistic; considering what is both achievable and affordable in the midst of so much uncertainty. It’s completely understandable that with everything that’s going on, making these lifestyle changes is not always top priority, however if we all try to get involved in some small way, we will be doing our bit to try and make a difference to our environment and working towards keeping the planet ‘alive for longer’.
There’s no place like home!
As we are all spending a lot more time at home, considering ways in which we can make some sustainable swaps in our living environment could be a good place to start!
Support ethical brands / products
From food to cleaning products, opting for a brand which has a similar goal / ethos to that of your own could be a good first step.
Quite often, you can tell a lot about a product by its packaging – bear this in mind when making your purchase.
From plastic free tea bags and re-fillable soap dispensers all the way to recyclable toilet roll – think about what would be the easiest and most achievable swap to start from and build on it. Quite often, once you start, it opens your eyes to a whole new variety of easily implemented options. One of my first swaps was skin care disposables, getting my hands on some re-usable face pads saved me time at the shop, money and reduced single use products.
Food waste is a huge problem across the world, and interestingly, most of which comes from individual households. This can be down to over purchasing, losing track of what’s in the fridge and food going out of date. Because most household waste will go into the bin, it eventually ends up in landfill. Therefore, it’s only a matter of time before we just don’t have enough space for the waste that we produce.
Making the necessary steps to compost food waste is a small change which could make a huge difference! If you don’t have one already, getting in touch with your local council and ordering a food waste bin can help those food scraps to end up back in the soil!
When we spend a little more time preparing our food, we are more likely to avoid unnecessary food waste which can be much more common when there is a house full working from home.
Useful tips to consider:
- Make a meal plan before heading to the shop to ensure you get what you need for the week ahead without over purchasing
- Freeze leftovers, or fresh food which is going past its best
- Shop smart – check what you already have and choose wisely when you’re at the supermarket. Things like tins of beans and legumes, dry whole grains, oats and frozen fruit and veg are both long lasting and nutritious.
How about a take away?
A good old take away is one of the absolute weekly highlights in our house at the moment! It’s great to support local businesses, and, enjoying a meal that you haven’t prepared yourself, that tastes good, is always very exciting!
This may not be an option at the moment, however taking your own keep cup to your local coffee shop, or a glass jar / re-usable container to store your take away meal can help to avoid unnecessary packaging and save the restaurant a couple of take away boxes in the process. Something to bear in mind post COVID when visiting your local café.
Spending a couple of hours really understanding which waste should go where can make such a difference! Certain single use packaging may be convenient, however can have a lasting impact on the environment, polluting the earth and sea and causing harm to many living things. Do your research! We are more likely to feel accountable or actually make a change if we understand why it is so important. .
Self compassionate sustainability
All of this may sound good in a perfect world, however if you’re just getting started it can feel like a bit of a minefield and come with a sense of pressure!
That’s when it’s worth reminding yourself that small steps are better than none, and not to be too hard on yourself if this way of living is not always realistic, affordable or a top priority in line with your current circumstances.
It’s all about meeting yourself where you are and doing what you can. Even things like visiting your most local shop that offers re-use / refill services, or when choosing a new toothbrush, opting for the wooden rather than the plastic.
Take it slow, be open to new things, make a change.
Here at The Garden, all of our take away packaging is biodegradable. (Under usual circumstances) we encourage keep cups, offer re-usable straws and have a policy which allows customers to bring back their glass bottles after use so that they can be used again. If you make a trip to our bathroom, you’ll notice that our toilet paper is 100% recyclable, supplied by the amazing brand ‘Who Gives a Crap?’
We are always on a mission to learn new ways to minimise waste and help reduce the impact of single use plastics on the environment. Check out our ‘Love Your Mother’ sustainability campaign, designed to keep us accountable for sustainable business practices.
At the moment, we are offering take away breakfast, lunch and dinner in the hope to bring a little excitement to your meals at home – be sure to swing by and grab your January Garden fix!
Holistic Health Coach - Anna Whyte
The ‘Wellness with Anna’ philosophy focuses on taking a more balanced and holistic approach to health. Often, the tools needed to make a lasting change are already in your toolbox. I offer client led guidance in order to support the progress of an individual working to meet their personal wellness goals. I will not diagnose, treat or take responsibility for bringing about wellness change, but direct, listen and support development. We work together on a journey to make health a main priority, both physically and mentally.