Image by Creativity103 / Creative Commons
The year is coming to a close and while some people may be fearful of making New Year’s resolutions, because they rarely keep them, here are 10 resolutions you’ll probably find pretty easy to keep. The key is to keep this in mind: go small and go simple.
I think it is important to make resolutions you can include in your daily routine. Whether your resolution is to recycle your water bottle, switch to using reusable bottles, or turn off the water when you brush your teeth, just pick one small, simple action per day. These little actions will add up throughout the year until you’ve actually made some fairly significant and smart, green changes in your life.
1. Smile. Once every day, for no reason at all, smile. Even laugh a little if you feel like, and definitely if you don’t feel like it. You will find a smile or laugh will brighten your day and your mood. Try it, it really does work.
2. Unplug. I don’t just mean at the end of the day. I mean at various times throughout the day. Whether it’s deciding to unplug while you enjoy your lunch break, unplug while you take a quick walk, unplug while you run to the grocery store, or whatever. The key is to get unplugged. Yes we live in a technology-driven society, but that doesn’t mean your electronic devices need to define who you are and what you do.
3. Grow something of your own. I mean grow some vegetables, or maybe a few herbs to add some new flavors to your food. If you think you have nowhere to grow anything or don’t know how, check out UrbanOrganicGardner.com. My friend Mike has some wonderful tips and ideas, stemming from his personal experiences, for growing food right on your balcony.
4. Even if you are not a vegetarian, nor have any desire to become one, try skipping meat at least one day a week. Opt for another type of protein. It’s a relatively simple thing to do and if you need some good recipes, I recommend the recipes at Green Wine Guide. Jerry can take almost any food and make it look and taste good.
5. Cut down on your water waste. This one has many facets. You can turn off the water when you brush your teeth, take shorter showers, use bathtub water to water plants, put your lawn sprinklers on timers (or opt for native plants instead of a lawn), only wash dishes with a full dishwasher, only run your washing machine with a full load, use a waterless car wash and more. You simply need to act.
6. Be a smarter consumer. Whether this applies to food, goods, materials, clothes or whatever, the idea is to buy only those items which you and your family will truly use. If you don’t need to buy a bulk package of carrots, don’t. Be honest with yourself and figure out which items you tend to let go to waste, then make a change to become a smarter consumer. I’ll bet you notice your costs will go down and the amount you throw away will go down too.
7. Go outside. I say this a lot and I really mean it. Every day resolve to go outside, look around and soak in the beauty of nature around you. Not only will the light of day do you some good, but you might find you like it and then you’ll spend even more time outdoors.
8. Ditch the car. Wait…before you start ranting about how you cannot do that, all I’m talking about here is ditching your car for one day a week. Try going car-less at least once a week and see how you like it. Walk, ride your bike, jog, take public transportation, whatever will get you where you need to go without driving your car.
As an added bonus, for those of you who are interested, Biofriendly Corporation has a proven fuel additive that can help you lower emissions while improving your fuel economy (on those days you do drive).
9. Throughout the year, take any good deed another does for you and pay it forward instead of backward. Do a selfless act for someone else. Not because it would be cool, or because you expect to get something in return, but because it’s a good thing to do. Can you imagine all the good will if we all took steps to pay it forward? If you need help, here are 3 Eco-Friendly Ways to Pay it Forward.
10. Last but not least, as my friends at EcoSalon put it so well, “Hope Less. Realize more.” This one is pretty simple when you think about it. Stop hoping things will happen and take responsibility for making them happen. This is probably one of the most basic resolutions anyone can make.
There are many green New Year’s resolutions you can and probably will make today, tomorrow and throughout the year. I say, if you’re going to make them, make them simple so you can actually get them done. Wishing you and yours a truly happy and biofriendly New Year!