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I started my journey as a volunteer writer for Issaquah Highlands Connections Newspaper almost a year ago. Writing about my eco-friendly way of life in my community was an opportunity to share ideas and learning about sustainable living and inspire others to do the same.
I often hear people talking about sustainable living as something complicated and frustrating. Often, they are convinced that a single person on their own cannot have an impact.
What does sustainable living mean?
What does it imply in our daily lives?
Is it so difficult to live sustainably?
It sounds so overwhelming. It’s such a commitment...
Do we have to give up on things we love in order to live a greener lifestyle? What are the benefits we will get from it? While our team at Highlands Council is working hard on events next month to celebrate Earth Day’s 50th anniversary, I want to remind you of the ‘why’ and the ‘how’ we can together make our community and our planet a better place.
Sustainable living is a lifestyle “that meets our need for food, water and shelter, without harming our environment or compromising the availability of essential resources for future generations. To live sustainably we must use less of the Earth’s natural resources, replenish what we can and produce less polluting waste,” according to Sustainablefriendscom.
I hear you. It’s a lot of words and it seems impossible to fit in our well-established life and routine. As a mom of three kids, a dog, a cat and 14 fishes (plus one husband), I know all of this is intimidating. But when you take a moment to think about it, to make the first step and commit yourself to only one little change at the time, it’s not that difficult to live sustainably.
Oh yeah, and it brings joy, an absolute self accomplishment and such a sense of gratitude!
It’s not about giving up on what we have or living in self-sacrifice mode. It’s about rethinking the way we consume and why. It’s about adopting a new mindset. It’s not about “zero,” “mini,” or perfection, it’s about intentions and values that we own and are willing to pass on to our children. We have the choice to do something and the option to make the shift by considering some small adjustments in our lives.
"Sustainability is a mindset."
Living sustainably is a (ongoing) process through which you will learn about yourself, create a real sense of purpose in your life, save money and bring a greater sense of community around you.
3 steps that will help you focus on what you want your life to be from now on:
Simplify your life: Check the big picture. Do an inventory of what you have and how you use it. Start fresh. Decluttering your space will bring you practical and emotional outcomes
Consume mindfully: Think twice before shopping. Determine your needs vs. your wants. Plan your purchases in advance to avoid fast fashion and overconsuming syndromes. Think outside the packaging to reduce waste.
Commit yourself: Start small. Be consistent. Do not reach out for perfection. Be patient. Inspire others.
“This story was first published in Issaquah Highlands’ Connections news, March 2020”
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