How To Live Sustainably: 5 Tips To Be More Sustainable In Everyday Life

With today’s continuous changes in every aspect of our life, especially with the support of the Internet and media channels, trends keep appearing one after another. Gradually, people often consider trends short-term, temporary and even negative. However, we believe the trend of sustainable living is a special exception. Why? Well, the reasons are many, in fact.


Firstly, the paradigm of sustainable development has been introduced and popularized since the 1980s, especially when the post-World War II period marked a momentous growth of industrial and commercial expansion. Associated with that was the global population boom, pollution and resource depletion made people more aware of the threats to the environment and their survival. 


In recent years, after witnessing and suffering several “side-effects” of global warming and environmental damages, we are more concerned about our actions towards this shared ecosystem. Luckily, sustainable living once again earns the attention it should get for a long time.  


Even though you are not the trend leader, at least you don’t want to be an outsider in this meaningful trend. To help you understand more about the actual meaning of sustainable living, why it matters and how to live sustainably, the rest of this article is for you to explore.

What Is Sustainable Living?

Sustainable living is a lifestyle in which our choices will have the least impact on the world around us and adopt better ways of living for a  greener future. 


It may sound intimidating at first because of its effect scope; however, you just need to adjust little things in your daily habits that can lead to unbelievable results.


The more beautiful thing is that there is no shortcut to approaching sustainable living. Rather, it is a lifelong journey of experimenting, learning, failing, and sharing experiences with others. 


Unlike other trends, we hope this trend can stay at its peak as long as possible so that the result can be more powerful and long-lasting. 


Why Should We Start Living Sustainably Today?

As we can see, the Earth is answering us faster than before. Every negative action we put on our planet returns consequences in a short time, such as earthquakes, global sea level rise, wildfire, tsunamis and severe storms, just to name a few. 


Let’s just say one of us reduces one plastic bottle a day. With 7 billion people on Earth, we have already cut off 7 billion bottles, creating more space for planting trees instead of harmful plastic landfills. Simply thinking of one of us “planting” a good seed, and that number multiplies to millions or even billions, the impact must be more impactful than we can imagine. And more importantly, we are running out of time when more animals are becoming extinct; deforestation happens rapidly; natural disasters are more serious, and the Earth is turning faster. 


Instead of finding another planet and continue destroying it like what we did to the Earth, we should change our habits to be more eco-friendly today. With that, we can not only save our “shared house” but also ensure our next generations still have a chance to admire the beautiful Earth as we did. 

5 Practical Tips To Live More Sustainably

You understand your responsibilities in making the world better but may wonder how to live sustainably properly. Well, with the following five super helpful tips, you will realize that living more sustainably doesn’t require much effort, and you might even regret you didn't know about them sooner. 

1. Buy Less - Choose Well - Make It Lasts

buy less - sustainable living

 

Since our living quality is increasing significantly in this modern age, we often overindulge ourselves by buying more. There is nothing wrong with rewarding yourself after a long and hard-working month with a couple of new clothes, shoes, or new smart technological devices. But if you think more of it, check your storehouse and count how many items left dusted that you only use a couple of times. 


Hence, the best practice to follow this method successfully is to think twice or even more before you decide to buy something. Simply ask yourself some of the following questions:

- Do you really need it?
- Will you see yourself using it more than three times a month?
- Can you borrow it from someone else?
- Can you finish all of these foods?

 

This will help you eliminate impulse buying habits, save money, and reduce waste.

Moreover, try to switch to these products next time you go shopping or grocery to start making a difference:

- Buying organic foods (no chemical fertilizers, no antibiotics, no GM)  instead of dairy or processed foods 
- Switch from single-use plastic bottles to stainless steel or reusable bottles
- Switch to compostable and plant-based straws and utensils instead of single-use plastic ones
- Use reusable or compostable bags instead of plastic bags.

    2. Support Local Businesses

    equo - eco-friendly products

     

    Interestingly, smaller, independent local businesses are often more sustainable than global corporations. Buy products from a company that leverages local resources' renewable or recycled materials to provide sustainable products for the citizens.


    Take EQUO as an example. The company has a meaningful environmental purpose by taking advantage of the leftover agricultural resources to produce sustainable products such as 100% natural and compostable straws, utensils, and food containers that help ecological individuals and local F&B businesses go green effortlessly. 


    Buying products from those companies means you are giving a hand in contributing to the living sustainably movement. 

     

    3. Say No To Fast Fashion

    Fast fashion is clothing that is mass produced from cheap, poor quality and non-biodegradable materials. This is an intended trend of manufacturers who want to create incentives for people to replace old clothes with new ones to keep up with the latest trends. 


    The manufacturers use a toxic process to make those cheap clothes. Plus, 60% of new clothes contain plastic, a very stubborn material that takes forever to decompose. 


    These clothes can be easily worn out after a couple of washes and end up in a landfill or incinerated. A simple funny ugly Christmas sweater can be worn for a maximum of three Christmas seasons (“hopefully”) and thrown away without any hesitation as it is supposed to be. Well, that sweater may take at least 200 years to decompose, so its owner must wait a really long time to “see” it again in heaven (or somewhere else, we don’t know). 


    Hence, you’d better choose a sustainable fashion collection using recycled cotton or 100% natural fabrics. Also, don’t forget a small rip on your shirt or pants can be easily fixed with a few sewings. Buying vintage or secondhand clothing is another sustainable option to update your collection without negatively affecting the environment. Last but not least, extend the life cycle of your clothes as much as possible by selling or donating them. 

    4. Save Energy


    This is probably the easiest way to live sustainably without much effort. You are saving a significant amount of energy by simply turning off all appliances when you are not using them or getting out of the house. 


    Even better, switching to energy-saving light bulbs and water-saving taps can help you save a lot of utility money and energy for the Earth.

    5. Reduce Your Carbon Footprint

    The fuel costs for transportation keep increasing. In addition, vehicles emit a great deal of pollution to the environment, adversely affecting our planet. 


    Switching to more eco-friendly and energy-efficient options such as electric cars, public electric transporters, or even bicycles will help a lot in reducing carbon pollution.


    Also, next time when planning for your trips, try to think of a slower yet sustainable way to go, such as using trains or buses instead of flights. A one-way flight produces enormous carbon emissions to the environment multiple times compared to other transportations. 


    Let’s make your travel more meaningful, sustainable and more life-changing experiences by slowing down and truly enjoying every minute of the ride. 


    A Brighter Future Starts From Today’s Small Action

    A journey of changing habits may feel overwhelming at first. Still, a slight change in our daily activities such as turning off lights, using reusable bags, bringing reusable bottles, or donating your old clothes will make an impressive impact in the future.


    Approaching sustainable living will never be easier if you try our helpful tips above. Start small by challenging yourself to live sustainably for three days, then five days, a week, a month, and who knows, a lifetime, and you will receive a great “thank you” from Mother Earth.

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