After a four month break from my blog, I’m back – kind of (third year is definitely going to get the better of my time-keeping). I don’t really have a plan for this post, but it’s been a whole year since I set up this blog so I want to recap my journey and also explain why I took a break.
Originally I was planning on blogging all the way through my summer break, but I soon found it was a lot harder to keep up with the sustainable habits I’d created when at home with my parents. I had a lot less control over how I wanted to do things so I struggled to encourage myself to actually be sustainable at all. When I was failing to do everything I wanted to be kind to the planet, I felt overwhelmed by my inability to be perfect. When I feel overwhelmed I tend to freeze, which is exactly what happened. I’d probably call it a relapse. I slipped backwards into some of my old, unsustainable habits. For example, I ended up buying a few new clothes from fast fashion brands which I hadn’t done for about 5 months, I was less concerned about my plastic consumption, and I completely stopped ecobricking (despite a hoarder’s pile that had accumulated in my bedroom). Thankfully, I’m back at uni now and back on track to make some more improvements once I’m in the swing of things again.
Over the last year I’ve made both big and small changes to my lifestyle. I think reminding myself of these will be a good way to keep myself motivated:
- I switched out lots of everyday products for more sustainable alternatives. My focus was mainly on bathroom and personal products, this means there’s room for improvement in other areas such as makeup and kitchen products.
- I started ecobricking.
- When possible, I was shopping with the aim of reducing my plastic consumption.
- In March I turned veggie (although I’ve had a couple of slip-ups since then) and I was pushing myself to eat plant-based most of the time.
- My shopping habits changed: I shopped less and I bought secondhand.
- I tried reducing my food waste by planning and prepping meals as well as freezing all my leftovers.
Taking a step back wasn’t what I originally planned, but in the end it was actually beneficial to me. I learned that it’s OK to feel overwhelmed. The changes I’m making are minuscule when you see them on an individual level – I’m doing what I can in my circumstances and that’s important. Realising this has given me a new-found motivation to be better on my journey to sustainability, but I now also know that if there are ever times when I can’t keep improving (for whatever reason), then continuing with the changes I’ve already made is still something.
Reassurance that we are doing our best is necessary because beginning your journey to a more sustainable lifestyle can seem intimidating and often pointless when the world is in such a mess. For anyone that is making changes to their life, don’t be put off if you begin to feel overwhelmed because it’s understandable. Being kinder to our planet in any shape or form is better than not at all, that’s what needs to be remembered.
I have so many ideas for future blog posts which have been accumulating over the summer, but here are a few you can expect to see pretty soon:
- The easy way to shop second-hand
- Dealing with eco-anxiety
- A few more sustainable swaps
- Plant-based milks and how to make your own oat milk
- More music recommendations