Written by Lizzie Morris! An avid coffee drinker, runner, true west coaster and complete book worm. She’s trying to explore and learn skills on everyday sustainability and teach herself a few lessons along the way.
When asking a few friends for their opinions on New Year’s resolutions, the mixed reviews did not surprise me. Most of the responses consisted of eating healthy, working out, losing weight and ditching poor habits etc. I would say that they’re all pretty textbook New Year’s resolutions. By all means, I am the first to encourage sustainable and healthy lifestyles and smarter choices. However, what I mean by sustainable changes is that rather than going cold turkey and giving up carbohydrates and sugars completely, perhaps trying to ease them out of your daily diet. Slow and steady changes are attainable and can be maintained throughout the year, rather than letting yourself down. Simple changes like replacing breads with yams or quinoa can help make a huge difference. The fact is, we often don’t take New Year’s resolutions seriously because we are not always reasonable when setting expectations for ourselves.
Rather than making the main focus of our resolutions on changing ourselves, we could always put the emphasis on celebrating ourselves. I am not discouraging self-improvement but that with self-love comes even more positive transformation. Often we place such an emphasis on outwards perfection that we forget that what’s happening on the inside counts. I challenge you all to pick a few things that you truly admire about yourself and celebrate them daily and share that positivity with your friends and family. Welcome this New Year, new semester and new challenges with your best self. Trust in your abilities, learn from your weaknesses, don’t define yourself by materialistic objects, and don’t measure your worth by your physical appearance but take on the world with your mind and talents.
Here are a few ideas for sustainable resolutions:
Let’s say you struggle with exercise. Why not bike or walk to and from work or school? Not only does making your commute into exercise helps break up your day, ittackles two tasks at once. If you go to the Burnaby campus, I would strongly encourage walking up or down the mountain, as there are multiple trails. Even just walking from or down to the skytrain or bus stop would give you an awesome workout.
Are you trying to give up soft drinks or juice? Purchase a water bottle to help you increase your water intake. Water bottles help eliminate waste and most importantly, they help to avoid purchasing bottled water.
If you want to start eating healthier snacks and cooking healthier meals, try checking out your local farmer markets or try ordering an SFU Harvest Box. The Harvest Box is provided by Sustainable SFU and provides you with local fruits and vegetables at a reasonable cost. The Harvest Box programme offers two boxes the Local or Value box varying in price. Plus, they provide great recipes and networks that help encourage healthy and clean eating.
Often, I find that resolutions that benefit myself end up benefiting the environment as well!