Every 1st of January we trot out the same tired resolutions … “Exercise More”… “Eat Healthier”…, and if we’re feeling really ambitious, we throw in a surprise to keep us motivated… “Learn French!” Why not try redefining some of your resolutions with an “Eco” twist, and focus a resolution around an environmentally-friendly area? Here at Redefining Eco we’ve taken a few of the common New Year’s resolutions and given them a little “green”ing, with a few helpful links to get you inspired. Feel free to use one of the resolutions below, or let us know about your own eco-friendly resolutions for 2012!
- Most of us are eyeing our middle and rethinking that second helping of holiday cookies . . . whether your goal is to lose 5 pounds or 50, why not sweeten the deal by eating more locally produced fruits and vegetables. Not only do you help out your waistline, but you help support local businesses and become more knowledgeable about the food you consume. You can find an organic food distributer, including CSAs, Farmers’ Markets, and grocery stores, by visiting LocalHarvest.org and putting in your City, State or Zip Code. Also, as the year progresses and the weather gets warmer you can also participate in a local community gardening program. You will get to spend time with new friends and create your own bumper crop of edible goods.
- After cramming in a hectic work day with a longer-than-necessary commute, who has time to exercise? Why not combine your commute and your workout by either biking to work, or combing the use of public transportation with a walk? You’ll fit that workout in your jammed-packed schedule, and you’ll save money, drive less and spend more time outdoors – helping you with more than just one resolution! There are tons of resources out there to help you figure out your bike or public transportation route, including www.google.com/maps, www.ridethecity.com, and your local city or county’s website.
- Unless you’re lucky enough to work outside everyday, most of us spend the workday chained to a cubicle and a computer screen. You can meet your vitamin D quota, get more exercise, and unwind all at the same time by spending more time outdoors. With over 400 parks in the United States, use the National Park Service’s Find a Park guide to decide which park you’d like to visit next, and many of them offer special events or recreational areas sure to peak your interest. Volunteering to help clean up a local river or stream can help to fulfill your eco-resolution and give back to your community!
- Sometimes we are so focused on conservation and all things green; we forget that many eco-friendly resolutions can also conserve that other type of green. By opting to bike to work or by turning down your thermostat a few degrees, you’ll save money as well as the environment. You can save money by reducing your energy bill by a few greenbacks each month, and consume less gas each time you use your car. Also, by acquiring second-hand items from Ebay or Freecycle, you can keep perfectly good items out of landfills and keep more money in your wallet.
- By combining your errands into one trip, using public transportation or a ride-share program, you can ease the stress of long commutes and save wear and tear on your vehicle. Or, if you want to make a giant eco-friendly leap, you can donate your car to charity and go completely car-free! By driving less, you’ll save money, and probably find ways to sneak more exercise in your daily routine. If you’re worried about those trips that require a car, you can always use a car sharing program like ZipCar.
“Redefine” Yourself! Now it’s your turn to tell us your resolutions — what are some nifty eco-friendly ideas and goals that you have for this year? No matter how big or how small your aspirations are, we commend you for improving your lifestyle by choosing environmentally friendly options at every turn!