Resetting Your Sustainable Journey
5 Steps to Reset Your Goal to Live More Sustainably
I don't know how many times I warned myself, but I did it. I took on too much too quickly and felt myself completely overwhelmed with trying to live as sustainable as posible. Unfortunately the overload left me feeling numb and unable to make decisions on how to move forward.
When I first started this journey, I started small. I took my already vegetarian diet a step further into veganism. I used resusuable grocery bags and produce bags 100% of the time, switched to bar shampoo, tubeless toothpaste and even started composting. I refused to buy anthing made in China or of syntheic fibers and even turned down gifts from family and friends.
Fast forward 5 years, right before Holiday 2021 and I was feeling miserable. I was as plastic free as a mother of 4 could possibly be, vegan and felt 100% out of touch. I found it difficult to go out and relate with people and even going to the grocery store was giving me anxiety. Most importantly, I was lost on how to pick myself up and start all over again.
But you know what? One of the beautiful things about life is that its a journey. You can reset and restart as often as you need to. Yes, its true! You don't even have to wait until Monday to do it. And what's even better than that, restarting and resetting doesn't cost ANYTHING.
How to Reset Your Eco-Living Journey Right Now!
1. Accept where you are in this moment without judgement.
If you are not where you want to be, don't beat yoursefl up over it. Negative self talk won't accomplish anything, in fact, it will only hold you back even longer. So just stop the negative thoughts and emotions and lets more forward!
I find it really helpful to journal. And this doens't need to be a huge commitment. Just find a few minutes and get it all out. Don't worry about spelling or sentence structure. Just start writing and allow yourself to get all your thoughts and frustrations out of your head and heart and on to the paper.
2. Decide where you want to be.
With your your thoughts and frustrations out on paper, its time to decide where you want to be. Think about what is not working, and what you want to do more (or less) of. Now that you have accepted things as they are, its time to decide what you are still wanting change. Imagine your future self writing the same type of journal entry. What does that look like?
For example, for me, I had reduced my plastic usage in my beauty care routine almost 100%. And while I was feeling very proud of myself for using less plastic, I was hating the result because I was not getting the skin care that I really needed, especially for just turning 40. So one of my one of my goals this year is finding a clean beauty routine that works for me as opposed to the one I created that is more fitting for my 7 year-old son. And while I realize that I might not be able to make my beauty routinie 100% plastic free, I'm looking at my approach more holistically and considering brands that are doing more for the planet and humanity.
3. Make a game plan.
With your your thoughts/frustations and ideas of where you want to be all on paper, now its time to make a plan! Your plan should be a slow and steady one where you revisit your goals monthly, weekly or even dailiy. If you aren't actively working on your goals, they aren't going to get accomplished.
There is a lot you can change to live more sustainably. When making your game plan, I urge you to take on one section of your life at a time. Trying to do too much, too quickly almost always ends up in eco anxiety. I suggest picking from areas such as, Sustainalbe Fashion, Clean Beauty, Green Home, Zero Waste Kitchen, ect., and then really honing in on your efforts. Once you feel like you have the swing of one area, then start back on step 1 with another area of your life in mind.
4. Move on from what doesnt work.
If it doens't work from you, move on.
There are a million ways to live more sustainably. If it doesn't make sense fo you at the time to change a certain area of your life, work on another area. You can always come back to it when the time is right. It is much better to just move on to another area than to stop your Sustainable Journey all together.
When I feel overwhelmed with trying to revamp a certain area of my life to live more sustainable, I find research exremely helpful. So while I may pause a goal, I take a little time to continue my research so that when I am ready to come back to the sustainabel goal, I feel more prepared.
5. Reasses and reset as often as needed.
Resetting can sometimes feel like failure. Negative self talk about why you didn't accomplish your green goals creeps in and moving past it can be difficult.
I read a great article, Why Its Okay to Change Goals. Jigessa's first 2 reasons really hit home for me. 1. Your priorities will change over time and 2. The process of pursuing goals should be enjoyable and satisfying. These two key points are so true. Throughout life, your priorities will change and some green goals may no longer be relevant. Even more, the process of pursing your goals should be FUN, the moment its not and it starts to feel like a handicap is the moment we get ready to throw in the towel.
So those are my tips on how to reset your sustainable living goals. I hope they were helpful! Don’t let anything hold you back from what you want to accomplish this year. Making small changes add up and if you keep at it, but the end of the year, you will be amazed of how far you have come. Comment below with your tips on how to reset your ecoliving goals!
Thank you for reading!