Twenty Postconsumer New Year’s Resolutions
Are you having trouble finding a New Year’s resolution that will help you find the satisfaction of enough and escape the consumer machine? We definitely wouldn’t suggest that you try to tackle twenty different New Year’s resolutions, but here’s a list of our favorites. Hopefully you can find something in this collection of eco-friendly and budget-conscious resolutions to inspire your own.
1. Spend Less Time on Social Media: The information overload not only increases your stress level, but it also exposes you to endless consumer messages. Make an action list on how to reduce how much time you spend on social media this year.
2. Increase Recycling by 10%: If everybody increased how much they recycle by just 10%, think how much we’d be able to keep out of landfills. Even if you’re an avid recycler, chances are that there are some areas where you could marginally increase what you recycle.
3. Spend at Least 15 Quiet Minutes per Day: No matter how busy your life is, you deserve fifteen quiet minutes per day to yourself to de-clutter your mind and reduce stress.
4. Spend at least 15 Minutes per Day Outside: We all spend too much time indoors. It’s good for your health, your stress level and your connection to the planet to spend at least fifteen minutes per day outside.
5. Unsubscribe from Marketing Emails: You may think that you’re getting great deals, but most studies show that marketing emails actually make you spend more on things that you don’t need. Start unsubscribing from as many as possible this year.
6. Reduce your Junk Mail: We all hate junk mail, but we rarely take action to reduce or remove it from our lives. Take action this year and stop having junk mail delivered to your home. It will reduce your purchases and save some trees.
7. Vote for an Eco-Friendly Candidate: Politics doesn’t stop with the presidential election. Do some research into your local and state elections and then get to the polls to vote for at least one candidate who supports clean energy and environmental initiatives.
8. Reduce Heat or Air Conditioning Bills by 10%: There are so many ways that the average person can reduce the amount of energy they use and money they spend on temperature control. From weatherproofing your home to wearing extra layers of clothing to switching from central heating to room-based heaters. Take a step to reduce bills and energy usage.
9. Start a Compost Pile: Don’t have a compost pile? It’s easier than you think to start one. Make this the year that you do.
10. Go an Entire Year Without Using Single-Use Grocery Bags: We all know that there’s nothing good about using disposable plastic bags at the grocery store. Make this the year that you commit to using reusable bags each time you go grocery shopping.
11. Adopt Meatless Monday: Not only is reducing meat in your diet healthy for you, but reducing meat can also help remove a huge strain on the environment. If you love meat and don’t want to give it up, consider adopting Meatless Monday as a way to reduce!
12. Have One TV Free Day per Week: TV doesn’t have to be evil, but too much of it isn’t healthy and the vast majority of people watch too much. Pick a day during the week and make it a TV-free day. Your mind will thank you.
13. Start Using a Monthly or Weekly Budget: If you’re not already using weekly and monthly budgets for your life, this is the year that you should start. It’s always going to be hard to get your finances in order if you don’t make and stick to a budget.
14. Volunteer One Hour per Week: No matter how busy you are, we all have one hour a week to make the world a better place. What you’ll get back from your hour of volunteering is more than you’ll give up. Trust us. Make this the year.
15. Upcycle More Regularly: Even things that can’t be recycled can still be upcycled into useful items. Especially if you’ve maxed out your recycling ability, look at things you can do to increase what you upcycle in your life.
16. Take Public Transportation Once a Week: Gas is expensive, cars pollute and almost everybody says that they want cities to invest in public transportation. Until people start using public transportation though, that’s unlikely. Even if it’s just one day per week, opt for public transportation instead of taking your car.
17. Clean Out One Cluttered Space per Month: For some of us, this should be one cluttered space per week! Commit to clearing clutter in one space in your home, car or office each month. It will keep things from getting overwhelming.
18. Eat Seasonal Foods Instead of Processed Ones: Eating seasonally and locally is both healthy and good for the planet. Say goodbye to canned tropical fruit in January and stick to seasonal dishes instead.
19. Waste Less Food: Americans in particular waste huge amounts of food. This is even more important to get under control as food prices rise. Make a commitment this year to wasting less food.
20. Get Rid of at Least One Credit Card: There aren’t very many situations where a person should need more than one credit card. If you’re not comfortable cutting them all up, get rid of at least one this year.
What’s your New Year’s resolution? Comment below to tell us about it or like us on Facebook and share it.
Need more assistance in learning to let go of the consumer media’s impact on your life, take control of your finances and find the satisfaction of enough for today? The Get Satisfied Interactive Handbook is a 30-minute web course that walks you through a series of specific questions and then presents a personalized how-to plan for becoming a postconsumer. Launch your evaluation for free right now.
Photo via Flickr Creative Commons: Dirty S