The S.E.E.D. Starter: Talking or doing


Sustainability is a big word and it encompasses some big ideas, but what are you doing to live a more sustainable lifestyle?


I am a writer and as such I make a living talking about doing things and yet I find myself increasingly frustrated by just how much talking I see going on around me and how little doing is taking place.  I am infinitely passionate about sustainable living and find myself incorporating it into conversations as often as possible in the hopes that someone might take a small idea from our talk and do something with it.  One of the problems with our fast-paced high tech society is that we talk more and do less – and the less we are doing, the less we have worth talking about.

While you are busy creating your grand plan for making our society more sustainable, I ask that you consider actually doing something that can make a difference right now.  If you are short of ideas, I’ve put down a few things you can do today to lead yourself toward a more sustainable life. Pick one and do it.

  • BYOB
    Bring your own water bottle with you to work and school.  Keep one in the car, too.  Not only does the bottled water industry waste tons of plastic, there are toxins in that plastic that can end up in the water you drink.  Drinking more water is healthy and inexpensive.
  • Reusable Shopping Bags
    Invest in, or make your own reusable shopping bags.  Then remember to put them in the trunk (I forget a lot!)  Don’t be afraid to tell a well-meaning cashier or bagger that you don’t need a bag for just a couple of items, or to consolidate items when possible.
  • Don’t Overpack
    Excess packaging is a serious problem and the only way to combat the problem is to hit the retailer where it hurts.  Stop buying products with excess packaging (especially produce!) and tell the store manager why you did it.  If you like, send an email, a letter or a phone call to the company and tell them why you do not purchase their over packed products.
  • Grow Something
    If you are new to gardening – and especially if you have never done it before – grow one thing.  If space is at a premium, a potted herb plant will often do quite well in a sunny kitchen window making it readily accessible when you need to add a bit to your next culinary masterpiece.
  • Compost
    You’ll hear me say this a lot, but if you aren’t composting you really need to get with 2010.  Composting is just as important as recycling because it is recycling, only you get to reap the rewards right there at home.
  • Switch to E-Billing
    Many companies now offer the option to stop receiving bills and statements by mail by opting to receive them via email.  Save paper.  Go digital.

Whatever you do, do something!