87 New Year Resolutions to be More Sustainable
2021 is on it’s way, people. She’ll be here shortly! I promise. In the meantime, take a breath, then start doling out goodbyes to 2020’s varied dumpster fires and make room for an incredible 2021! And may I suggest you consider celebrating with new year resolutions to be more sustainable?
The great thing about resolutions to be more sustainable is that they often come with other perks. Some make you healthier. Or they might save you money. Maybe you’ll build stronger relationships with nature, people, or your own possessions.
Regardless, sustainability is a personal and planetary perk in itself. So if you are considering being more sustainable in 2021, congrats! You have come to the right place! Below, you should definitely find something that works for you to make your 2021 footprint even smaller than 2020’s.
Let’s get started!
new year resolutions to be more sustainable
- Eat less meat
- Start your vegetarian/vegan diet
- Eat more local produce
- Buy local whenever possible
- Practice the 24 hour wait before you buy something you think you want
- Avoid single use packaging where possible
- Bring your own reusable shopping bags
- Eat your leftovers
- Stop wasting food by buying and preparing less
- Work on the FIFO method
- Stop buying single use water bottles and invest in reusable water bottles
- Insulate your home
- Hang-dry your laundry
- Use reusable makeup wipes
- Eat more organic foods
- Don’t throw out paper- form a scrap pile for notes and lists
- Buy second-hand
- Stop supporting fast fashion and only buy from responsible clothing brands
- Avoid plastic
- Stop using single-use Keurig pods. Use reusable coffee filter baskets
- Plant native pollinators (flowers for the bees!)
- Buy less. Buy what you need or really want and say no to the lukewarm wants.
- Unplug your appliances when not in use
- Better yet, put your appliances on a power strip for quick shut off of several at a time
- Turn off the lights in unoccupied rooms
- Install motion sensors
- Donate items that are still useful instead of sending them to the landfill
- Purchase from local Facebook groups or OfferedUp
- Grow your own garden
- Plant trees
- Switch all your light bulbs to LED lightbulbs
- Use what you have; mend, repurpose, get creative before buying something new.
- Use digital products instead of tangible products when possible
- Take food preservation classes, then use what you know!
- Drive less
- Pay attention to food miles
- Stop eating beef
- Commit to using small businesses that offer needed services (computer repair shops, tailors, etc.)
- Start bringing your own container for leftovers at restaurants
- Say no to plastic straws
- Support businesses that support the environment and community (farmers markets, sustainable restaurants, etc.)
- Start composting
- Join local cleanups, or organize your own
- Use conscious travel brands and tour businesses when you take a trip (check out Green Key or Wajay)
- Fix or mend what’s broken instead of tossing it, or buying new
- Avoid microbeads in your beauty products
- Don’t use synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, or herbicides in your lawn care routine
- Divest from fossil fuels
- Switch to drought tolerant landscaping instead of watering a lawn in hot, dry places.
- Take public transport when possible
- Switch to a hybrid or electric vehicle
- Carpool to work or school
- Get a seltzer-maker instead of buying and tossing hundreds of seltzer cans/bottles
- Stick with natural products over synthetic ones
- Eating beef still? Commit to organic, grass-fed beef.
- Use your microwave to reheat things, instead of a conventional oven
- Rewear your clothes and wash them less. Not only do you save energy, but they will last longer. (easier if you’re working from home!)
- Turn your heat down. Use a blanket or a small space heater if needed.
- Volunteer with a sustainable organization
- Commit to calling your representatives when a vote on relevant issues comes up
- Join Citizens Climate Lobby
- Watch ALL the sustainability documentaries.
- Switch to shade grown coffee
- Switch to renewable energy
- Use UnPaper Towels
- Don’t throw away those ratty t-shirts. Turn them into rags
- Get creative and repurpose. Look at everything as a resource to be valued! (ratty t-shirts, empty spaghetti jars, candle wax.)
- Keep seeds from your plants, and share with neighbors and friends
- Asset-share. Ask friends for their tools when you need them. Offer yours. Or create a tool share with your friends to make it a little more official. (this is how I was able to rototill for my garden without buying one).
- Stop buying synthetic fragrances, and instead use organic essential oils for great aromas
- Bring bags to pick up litter on your daily walks
- Change your showerheads, faucets, and toilets over to low flow units
- Try the no-poo method to avoid nasty chemicals from your hair washing routine
- Learn your local recycling rules. (They are all different!)
- Stop buying plastic toothbrushes. They have bamboo ones now!
- And no more plastic ear swabs
- Eco-fy your toilet paper game with either a bidet, bamboo toilet paper, or recycled toilet paper
- Conduct ‘use by date’ audits, and base meal planning on what needs to be eaten first
- Refuse single use cutlery and plates. Serve on proper plates, and bring your own utensils for fast food
- Actually, stop eating fast food.
- Ladies, start using a menstrual cup
- Learn to stitch small holes in your loved clothing or find someone who can repair them for you.
- Say no to receipts when its an option
- Commit to learning about how to be more sustainable in one aspect of your life. (health, food, fashion, beauty, etc.)
- Barter. Exchange what you have that you don’t want to get what don’t have that you do want!
thank you for your commitment to sustainability!
Hopefully there is something on this list that sparked some excitement for you. Or at least got you thinking about other creative new year resolutions to be more sustainable in 2021.
I’m so grateful for your efforts in being a better steward of this planet and its inhabitants. I wish you the best of luck! And if you struggle at some point to follow through with with your resolutions, don’t give up! It’s not about perfection- it’s simply about being better. We’re all guilty of not being perfect. But we’re still granola to the core.
Cheers, my amazing guilty granolas! To you, and a green year ahead.