It’s that time of year again! The hustle and bustle of the Holiday season are almost over and it’s time to start shifting our attention to what we want to accomplish in the New Year. Lots of folks have the goal to live a little more sustainably. But most people set out with the goal of becoming zero waste and when it doesn’t happen overnight, they get overwhelmed, frustrated and quit!
I’ve come up with 12 attainable sustainable goals – one to try each month so it’s not as overwhelming!
Sustainable New Years Goals:
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1. January – Do a house audit
I love to start the year off on a fresh note. So after the Christmas decorations come down, do an audit! It’s time to enter every room in your house with a pen and paper (or digital list!) and take note of everything.
The first step would be to declutter simply. And when I say declutter, I mean only the things that are broken, not being used, or don’t “spark joy”. Find ways to donate, giveaway or sustainably dispose of these items. Don’t throw away your unsustainable or single-use items.
That’s where the audit comes in. Take note of the unsustainable items you use often like Ziploc bags, q-tips, shampoo bottles, etc. That way when those things have been used up, you can trade them for reusable and more sustainable options.
Get your clothing audit guide here!
2. February – Reduce food waste
Food waste is a HUGE contributor to climate change. It’s so easy to think that our food scraps or mouldy leftovers will just biodegrade in a landfill but this isn’t the case. The best thing we can do is actively try and reduce our food waste. This means only buying what we need, using up every part of the food, freezing, baking etc.
3. March – Grow something
Growing our own food not only helps with the rising costs of food and helps give food security, but it’s also a more sustainable option! Whether you own a homestead or live in an apartment, you can grow something! If you have the space (even a small outdoor space!) I encourage you to grow a few veggies and herbs. March is the time to plan and get your seeds!
Read all about my small garden here.
If you live in an apartment, you can still grow! Even if it’s on a smaller scale, it’s still worth it! I love my Click N Grown for indoor gardening. Save 10% with code ROSE10
4. April – Start composting
Composting will not only help with your gardening but also with reducing food waste! Sometimes food goes bad. Instead of tossing, compost it instead! The Lomi is an amazing invention that turns your food scrap into dirt (like actual dirt) in hours that you can use in your garden or house plants!
5. May – do a “no-buy” month
“No-buy” months are challenging but so rewarding. A huge part of sustainable living is consuming less! Challenge yourself to go an entire month without buying anything except for the essentials like gas, groceries, etc. It’s a really rewarding challenge, plus you’ll get to save some money!
6. June – Swap single-use for reusable
Remember that audit you did in January? Well, I’m sure some of those single-use/disposable items are running out by now! So go ahead and swap them for their sustainable counterparts like swapping Ziplocs for reusable Stasher bags and shampoo for Shampoo bars!
Huge list of sustainable swaps here!
7. July – Switch to clean, zero-waste cleaning products
Gone are the days of toxic, unsustainable cleaning products. Clean your entire home with plastic-free products from Myni! You can even save 10% with code: CAITY
8. August – Thrift
Thrifting is almost like another form of recycling. You’re taking items that already exist and giving them new life! If you’re not already actively thrifting, the time to start is now! If you don’t have access to any thrift stores you can use apps like Poshmark and Depop to buy second-hand!
9. September – Clean beauty
Skincare and makeup should always be clean. Clean ingredients that is. most commercial and drugstore products are FILLED with chemicals that are harmful to both you and the planet. Make the switch and check out these resources for more info!
Beginners guide to clean beauty
10. October – Take shorter showers
Most of us are privileged enough to have access to water by simply turning on a tap! A lot of people don’t have that luxury. But whether you have lots of water or not, we need to understand that water is a finite resource and we need to do our best to conserve as much as we can. Find more tips for saving water (including taking short showers!) here.
11. November – Decorate sustainably
Ah, November. The last few months of the year are truly the most wasteful. We can help by decorating sustainably! This includes thrifting, making, upcycling, re-using and investing in decor you’ll use for years and years!
12. December – Gift sustainably
Gifting can be hard. We’re constantly pushed consumerism for months leading up to the holidays that put too much emphasis on the gifts rather than the intent behind them. And so many of these gifts get donated, end up in landfills, or returned…to ultimately end up in landfills as well. Make it a point to give thoughtful, sustainable gifts that will be used and cherished. When in doubt, gift an experience!
And there you have it! 12 sustainable New Years’ goals you can tackle one at a time! This way, it’s so much easier, exciting and less overwhelming than trying to be 100% sustainable come January.
I hope you enjoyed this post and it inspired you to be as sustainable as possible in the New Year! Please don’t forget to share this post and follow me on Instagram for daily low waste living inspiration!
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