The Beginning: The Five Vows

I know that the things I do and consume can have a damaging effect on the environment, but I’ve always just assumed that the fact I don’t use plastic cutlery or carrier bags kind of excused that. Although these things help it certainly does not excuse my other unsustainable habits, especially as someone who wants to pursue a career in conservation and sustainability.

I’ve always use reusable shopping bags and avoided showers but I wanted to make some new goals.

When I first started taking sustainable living more seriously I broke it down into five goals (but vows sound more dramatic for my title!). These goals were the first things I felt I wanted to change. It’s been over a year since I first wrote these goals down and some I’ve mastered and others I’m still working on.

My five vows:

  1. I will buy only cruelty free products – that are also more sustainable and natural hopefully.
  2. I will reduce my meat and dairy intake, or cut it out completely – I’m currently pescatarian and mostly dairy free.
  3. I will buy secondhand, this is referring mostly to clothes as I’d just started to realise just how damaging fast fashion is. But as an avid reader I also adopt this with books.
  4. Reduce plastic use – avoid heavily packaged products, referring to mostly food items.
  5. Shop locally – reduce food miles.

A year later and I’ve been sticking to these fairly well although the last two food ones are definitely proving the most challenging at the moment. When I’m in my uni town I know there’s a fruit and veg seller where I can buy cheap unpackaged fresh veggies if I go at the right time of day but I don’t think they’re local or organic but the supermarkets have lots of plastic?? I think my best bet is to use a combination of the two but any recommendations would be welcome!

I’m going to do separate posts on some of the other goals that have been more successful.

What goals do you use to be more sustainable? Anything else I should add to my list?

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