Six things I'm doing to live more sustainably

Six things I'm doing to live more sustainably

As anybody who took the time to read my first piece on how sustainably I do (or don’t) live might have noticed, there’s clearly quite a bit of room for improvement. But I think that for most of us, changing lifestyle habits is always easier if there’s an added incentive. Happily, many steps towards sustainable living are also money-saving.

Jo Marshall

Here’s what I’m going to do:

  • Fewer baths and be more conscious about how long I spend in the shower. Restrict myself to only using the dishwasher twice a week, and only rinsing with cold water when doing the washing up. This’ll reduce our water consumption, and should bring down our energy bills.

  • Turn off the lights when I’m not in a room. I do like a soft, warm glow in the evenings and I do find it has a calming effect. But there really is no point in making a room cosy when there’s no one there to enjoy it. This will obviously reduce our electricity bills.

  • Find a foldable, reusable shopping bag that fits into my handbag so it’s right there when I need it. Spending money on plastic bags is a real waste – sure, it’s only a few pence but as Tesco says, “every little helps”. I mean, actually spending money to ruin the environment? That’s not really on, is it?

  • Challenge my favourite grocery shop about their plastic use. There’s got to be a better way for them to package croissants in particular. Perhaps a new approach can save them money?

  • Research the labour practices at the cheaper clothing brands I support. Surely just because their clothes are cheap doesn’t mean they’re all using forced or child labour in production?

  • Put my money to work in a more sustainable way. Over the next few weeks, I’m going to be looking into how exactly to do this. I’ve already put together a guide to some of the confusing terms associated with sustainable investing. I’ll continue explaining what some of the most common sustainable investing strategies are, and providing some practical tips on what to think about when starting out on the sustainable investing journey.

I’m sure as I become more and more aware of the environmental and social issues we face, I’ll notice other areas of my life that I can change for the better. But for now, these will do.

I think it’s all pretty achievable - and sustainable! for me. Not only will I be doing my bit for the planet, but I’ll be saving a bit of money, and giving my husband less reason to complain about lights left on and shower durations.

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