“I’d love to live a sustainable lifestyle, but I’m just too busy.”
In a world that praises busyness, it’s easy to ignore the concept of sustainable living or throw it in the too hard basket. It’s just another thing to think about, another task to add to the to-do list, another responsibility to take on… right?
Wrong. Sustainable living and slowing down are two concepts that cannot be separated. Both are beneficial for you AND the planet. The myth that a sustainable lifestyle makes you more busy, is about to be busted. Embracing a sustainable lifestyle involves new habits and ideologies that allow you to spend more time doing what you love and less time being ‘busy’.
Sustainability = more time and better experiences
The tasks of an individual who lives with less waste and more consideration for the planet, can definitely sound more time consuming at surface level. To name a few: bulk bin shopping, baking all your own food, reading ingredient labels in detail, washing take away reusables, repairing clothes, and constantly remembering to take your reusables everywhere.
However, it’s crucial to remember that even though these activities may take slightly more time, sustainable living reduces time in other areas. Living with a sustainable mindset entails activities such as buying in bulk and taking less trips to the supermarket, staying away from malls and mindless consumerism, and having less stuff in your home so you reduce time spent cleaning and maintaining items.
The extra time spent making the effort to reduce your waste and impact on the planet, is outweighed by all the time given back to you from slowing down, living in the moment, and avoiding a busy state of mind
‘Busyness’ has contributed to the climate crisis
One of the reasons for the climate crisis, is society’s busy and convenience-based mindset. We’ve become so focused on doing more, being everywhere, and accomplishing so much each day, that we’ve forgotten the very essence of living in tune with the planet. The world’s collective single-use mentality and excessive extraction of the planet’s finite resources, has not only had a negative effect on the environment, but also made us forget the joys of simply existing.
With this in mind, the very first mission for a buddying sustainable lifestyle enthusiast, is doing the opposite of busy: slowing down.
A busy mindset encourages you to grab a plastic wrapped sandwich while you’re on the run, or jump in the car for every single trip. But sustainable and slow living advocate for growing your own food, making meals from scratch, repairing rather than buying new, taking public transport, and shopping local.
When you take away ‘busyness’, you and the planet thrive.
Slowing down produces quality work
Slowing down doesn’t mean spending all day on the couch. It means being mindful of your priorities, saying no to obligations, and focusing on what really matters. When you put this into practice, the work you accomplish will be of a much better quality, and done in a shorter amount of time. Rather than struggling through a task with a thousand other things on your mind, you will generally work efficiently and quickly. The extra time saved can be spent making sustainable lifestyle choices, or enjoying this beautiful planet with friends and family!
Living sustainably is great for your health
Being in a constant state of ‘busyness’ has negative effects on your mental, emotional, and physical health. If you’re always busy, you may end up spending more time trying to correct your health issues, ultimately adding to your busyness!
Slowing down and living a more conscious and planet friendly lifestyle, does wonders for your health. The art of slowly making a meal is great for the digestive system, the joy that comes from the human connection of a farmer’s market, and the fulfilment of DIY tasks, all positively build your wellbeing. Busyness only breaks it down.
Sustainable living isn’t about perfection or instant change, but it is about slowing down. Before you decide if you have the time to live an environmentally conscious lifestyle, it’s important to understand that embracing sustainable living doesn’t make you more busy, it does the opposite. Living with care for the planet gives you more time for experiences you treasure, increases the opportunity for quality work, and benefits your health.
Ready to start living a sustainable lifestyle? Start by slowing down and letting the busyness go. Living in a constant ‘busy’ state is not sustainable.
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