While the official celebration of Earth Day has passed really every day is Earth Day. Each day we reside on a planet that is abundant in beauty and natural resources. We have the opportunity to appreciate that, which in turn enhances our life in infinite ways. However, with that also comes the responsibility to take care of that beauty.
This isn’t about the debate of climate change and human impact on the earth. Regardless of your stance on that if you keep your indoor home clean wouldn’t you want to keep your outdoor home clean too? You may not notice the direct impact of throwing away a bunch of trash or sending pollutants out of a smokestack but it does affect you, those around you, and those thousands upon thousands of miles away. No one wants to see trash in a riverbed, breathe in toxins, or not have clean water to drink. Taking our environment into consideration not only benefits Mother Earth but there are numerous holistic health benefits for us too.
Here are 10 ways to honor Mother Earth while at the same time enhancing our own health overall:
Pick up Trash
So what if it isn’t your’s. It’s there and it’s nasty. You’ll feel instantly happier and more at peace not having to look at it and also accomplished that you were of service.
Aside from reducing the amount of trash produced, consuming less also saves you money and allows you to spend more time doing the things that truly matter to you. This can also include reducing your paper trail as much as possible by banking and paying bills online, as well as other tasks that can be done electronically.
Reuse and Recycle
As much as you can. Which these days seems like pretty much everything. Sure, it might take a bit more effort but anything worthwhile takes some effort. It also provides you with the opportunity to be more creative. The multiple uses for items are only limited to the breadth of your imagination. There are many people who are able to produce very little to no trash so if they can do it we can all at least cut back.
Visit Thrift/Antique Stores
If you do need something and it doesn’t have to be brand new (aka underwear!) there are gazillions of items simply sitting around waiting to be loved again. Not only will you be helping the environment but you’ll also end up with something unique and likely of higher quality than something brand new.
You'll support local business and also reduce your carbon footprint since it won’t have to be shipped from way far away. Everybody’s happy!
Eat In Season
Same as buying locally you’ll support local business and reduce your carbon footprint. As well, it will inspire you to get creative with your food and try new things, boosting your mental health.
Eat Less Meat
No, this is not my ploy as a vegetarian to convert everyone over from the dark side! Eating meat in and of itself is not a problem; however, the the livestock that most consume creates more pollution than anything else on our planet. If you can’t completely give up meat try eating less of it (which is what most of the world does) and be mindful of where you’re getting it from. Also, eating a more balanced diet creates greater health in general.
As much as you possibly can. With your food, gardening supplies, and household cleaners. I know, it can get expensive but if you can afford it the benefit can outweigh the cost. Pesticides aren’t good for the environment or your own health. Organic products will benefit both your health and your immediate environment’s health. It will also help you and your home to look more beautiful too and aesthetics are important to mental wellbeing. Just make sure you also do your research since not all organics are created equal.
Relish in the Outdoors
Walk in a forest, swim in a lake, climb a mountain, sit and read in a park. The benefits of spending time in green space are innumerable. Breathe in the air. Take in the silence. Literally ground yourself and allow the restoration. It also allows you to connect to something greater than yourself (whatever you want to call it).
Plant trees, clean up the beach, collect signatures on petitions. Not only will you get time in the outdoors but you’ll also be of service and connect with others, which benefits your mental and emotional health.
The above list might seem overwhelming but the key, as with anything, is to start small to build habits that simply become a part of your every day. The benefits to your entire life and planet will be worth the effort.