With the never ending crisis of population growth around the world, rise in unemployment and scarcity of food, water and oxygen, we are in a situation to think what we are doingin the world and how it is impacting our planet. It took around 20 years for us to understand and accept the fact that mankind is the only causative factor for global warming. Unexpected seasonal changes, rise in temperature and extinct species signify only one thing to humans - the only species capable of thinking rationally have failed to take care of the world and there is urgency for us to open our eyes and be more conscious with our actions. As some of our scientists, wildlife biologists and NGO organizations contribute their best to save our nature, we common people can also join hands to mend our planet. Nobody can change our milieu in one night. But, opting for more eco-friendly habits will definitely do some good. Before discussing how we can change our lives for better in no time and cost, let us have a quick retrospection. Go ahead and ask yourself these questions to remind yourself about the unsustainable lifestyle we all follow:
1) Do you use petrol/diesel vehicles, even to reach shorter distances?
2) Do you spend more than 20 min for bathing?
3) Do you consciously switch off fan and lights when you are leaving a room?
4) Do you opt for shower gels and detergents that are chemically dominant?
5) Do you carry your own cloth bags to stores to avoid using plastic bags?
After a pinch of realization, let’s talk about the facts that can’t be denied in terms of global warming. Global warming, when put in simple terms, is the change of seasons. These changes in seasons demand modifications in the way we have been living our lives. Everything including the way we cultivate crops has changed. Due to rapid urbanization, transformation of agricultural land as buildings reduces the growth output, resulting in the shortage of food. Controlling population is the next big hurdle as the problem of homelessness is rampant throughout the world. To live our lives with social awareness is basic human quality and to enhance it, embracing and practicing sustainable living is the key option. Sustainable living in short would mean to lead a life that least impacts our planet and keep our nature a little away from harm. Sustainable living should meet the present ecological, societal and economical needs without compromising on the motto that is to preserve the nature. The only golden rule that needs to be followed in sustainable living is to be committed to do no harm for any living species. Every choice we make impacts others, from the car we buy to the toothpaste we use – through its creation, its distribution, its use and its disposal. And most likely, we’ll never know whom we are impacting. But, people will suffer or earn, thrive or learn and even may die and some may live happily out of our choices, even without our knowledge.
The three integral elements of sustainable living are consciousness, smartness and sagacity.Sustainable living, on the other hand starts from shopping. Producing less rubbish is the first step to start living sustainably. To reduce waste, buying less is the only easy and smart option. Knowing the difference between “wanting” and “needing” can help you with this. Before buying anything, ask yourself whether you “want” it or you “need” it. To ease your efforts, put yourself in a situation to decide whether you need to own it or you just need it for a little while and this can help you filter your shopping list. Buying first quality products that can last longer is a smarter option to reduce waste. Consider the life cycle of the product. Think where it came from and where it will end up after the usage. Trying your hand on second hand shopping is not a bad idea too. But, make sure you are not settling for something that is unworthy. Becausethe fact is if you are unhappy with what you are buying, then chances are that you may end up buying more products which is waste of money and time. So, make it a practice to not compromise on the quality of the product.
Shifting to a sustainable living requires your interest and effort. Take a few minutes to think about your daily life. Think about the daily essentials you use, how much waste you produce, the unnecessary things you have in home and about the materials of the things you use on everyday basis. You can create your own unique way of sustainability by replacing store bought essentials by home-made organic products. For instance, preparing your own soaps, sanitizer, shampoo, laundry powder and cleaners can be way easier and profitable than you assume it to be. Adding to that, it contains less harmful chemicals or no chemicals which will reward your effort. Internet is flooded with zillions of blogs and vlogswith various methods to prepare your own sustainable products. Swapping processed and packed imported foods with organic fruits and vegetables is one of the most recommended switches. Preferring organic or chemical-free cosmetics over chemically made beauty products is another way to sharpen sustainable lifestyle. Replacing toothpastes and shower gels with home-made tooth powder and bathing powder, using glass jars over plastic jars in kitchen, using wooden or stainless steel spatulas and utensils, using glass or bamboo straws, switching to handloom clothing, bed and table linens and curtains made from organic cotton, bamboo, wool and other natural fibres and avoiding plastic furniture are some of the simple things that can be done to bring some effective changes in the way you live.
Last but not the least; let’s talk about the R’s in our lives. There’s been enough talking about the three R’s. So, it’s time to talk about the 5-R’s that is Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Rot and Recycle. Refuse to buy a lot of things, Reduce the amount of things you keep in home, practice to Reuse everything in some way (this can add a pinch of vintage style too); Rot,figuratively means to store things and to get the maximum benefit out of everything; literally, use it until it gets rotten and the last R is the very familiar idea that of recycling.Sustainable living is a lifestyle that will have an individual highly engaged throughout his life. You’ll keep on learning, experimenting, exploring, creating and committing yourself to the increasing sustainable ideas and practices, and above all, you’ll have to keep on loving to live sustainably. Because after all the frightening news and facts regarding our modern lives, only one question stands- How do you want to live; with fear and insecurity or with love and hope?
Some of the recommended blogs and vlogs to get better knowledge and guidance about sustainable living are Going Zero Waste, Eco Warrior Princess, Moral Fibres, Mindful Momma, Wellness Mama, Mommy Potamus, Pick Up Limes, Lizzie Bombini, etc.