30 Day Sustainable Living Challenge
Green Living

30 Day Sustainable Living Challenge: Start Here!

I am so excited for this challenge!  I’ve been wanting to put together a 30 day sustainable living challenge since I first started my blog 10 months ago and it’s finally happening!  

What is a Sustainable Living Challenge?

Living sustainably means living in a way that doesn’t harm the environment, or causes the lowest impact on it.  Green-living, eco-friendly, and zero-waste are all terms that are used to describe a sustainable lifestyle, but they all have slightly different meanings.  

Green-living:  A broad term used to describe making choices to use environmentally friendly products and services 

Eco-friendly:  Another broad term meaning not harmful to the environment

Zero-Waste:  A movement that focuses on waste prevention, often encouraging products that are designed to avoid and eliminate wasted resources and materials 

In our 30 Day Sustainable Living Challenge, we are going to incorporate one new concept a day, covering all of our bases with the above movements.  

Why a 30 Day Sustainable Living Challenge?

This is an easy-peasy way to get a taste of green-living, zero-waste living, and eco-friendly living by making one change a day.  Some of these challenges will be super simple and some may be more difficult for you.  Either way, I hope that you implement sustainable living practices well after this challenge is over!

How do I do the 30 Day Sustainable Living Challenge?

Easy!  I will list out all 30 challenges in this first blog post.  Some will have links to more information, some will be a simple description.  Just do the best you can!  I will also be posting daily (yes, daily!) on my Instagram to keep up with the challenge, answer any questions, and see the progress we can make together!  Make sure you follow me @laurcim.xo!

Each week of the challenge, I will be posting about progress, tips, and more.  I will follow the order provided, but you can always switch it up if you need.  Remember, all 30 days are already listed here for you!

Don’t forget to subscribe to my weekly emails so you receive the 30 day challenge updates in your inbox!

Without any further ado, let the challenge begin!

Day 1: Turn off the lights.

To reduce energy and electricity, turn off the lights after 8pm.  Instead, use candlelight to illuminate your home and feel an immediate sense of coziness, peace, and relaxation.

Day 2: Pick up litter.

Today, notice trash wherever you go.  Carry a bag and gloves with you for the day and pick up everything you see.  Dispose of it properly and feel really good about yourself.  

Day 3: Reduce food waste.

Save leftovers instead of throwing them in the garbage.  Small portions of foods can be eaten another time as snacks.  Did you make way too much and don’t think you’ll eat it again soon?  Freeze it for another quick meal. 

Day 4: Walk or bike.

Reduce car emissions by choosing to walk or bike somewhere today.  Small changes add up and are also great for your health. 

Day 5: Bring a reusable water bottle.

Ditch the plastic disposable bottle and opt for a refillable one.  Commit to bringing it everywhere today so you’re not tempted to purchase any while out and about.

Day 6: Make a zero-waste bathroom swap.

This could mean choosing a bamboo toothbrush over plastic, opting for reusable makeup remover wipes in place of cotton rounds, or finding a new skincare brand that uses glass bottles in place of plastic.  Check out more of my eco-friendly bathroom tips here.  

Day 7: Grow your own food.

You don’t need a full garden to grow food and you can even grow food inside!  The best way to start out is by growing herbs or sprouts in your kitchen windowsill.  You can also regrow food scraps like lettuce and scallions by placing them in water. Pretty cool!

Day 8: Consider eco-minimalism.

Eco-minimalism is a paired down lifestyle for the benefits of sustainability.  Eco-minimalists choose to only purchase (or bring into their life) things they will truly use in order to reduce their impact on the environment.  To read more about an eco-minimalist lifestyle, check out this resource from The Plain Simple Life.  

Day 9: Fix something instead of replacing it.

Need a new bike tire?  Try patching it first.  Hole in your sock? Learn how to darn.  Broken toy?  We have fixed a number of toys with super glue.  By fixing something instead of replacing it, we are keeping it out of the landfill.  

Day 10: Say no to plastic packaging.

While out and about, watch how often things we purchase are in plastic packaging.  Opt for things that are in recyclable cardboard boxes or have no packaging at all. 

Day 11: Go meatless.

By choosing one day a week to go meatless, we can reduce our food budget, reduce our risk of cardiovascular disease, and reduce our carbon footprint!

Day 12: Brush up on your recycling knowledge.

Remember the 3 R’s?  Time to review them here.  But also, check your local recycling company to make sure you are recycling correctly.  If you are frequently disposing of things that are not recyclable through your local company, check to see if there are any programs through TerraCycle or another company.  

Day 13: Do your laundry sustainably.

To conserve water and energy:  choose larger loads, wash on cold, choose an express wash, and hang dry when you can.  And make sure your products are safe for you and the environment!  Check out my eco-friendly laundry tips here.  

Day 14: Refuse a straw.

Unless a disposable straw is made out of a biodegradable plastic-alternative, it’s time to say no.  There are so many options out nowadays that are better for both you and the earth.  Sugarcane, avocado, and agave are just a few types of biodegradable straw alternatives.  Choosing a reusable straw made out of metal or bamboo is another good choice, too. 

30 Day Sustainable Living Challenge

Day 15: Bring a reusable bag.

Flimsy plastic grocery bags are terrible for the environment and often end up as litter.   Switching is simple!  When you’re out and about, make sure you have a reusable bag on you for anything you need to purchase.  Store a few large reusable bags in your car so they’re ready to go for big shopping trips and you’ll always be prepared.

Day 16: Be resourceful.

Use something you have or borrow from a friend instead of purchasing new. Need an extra muffin tin to bake cupcakes for a bake sale or class treats?  Borrow from your mom before you go out and purchase one.  Need to reorganize a space in your home and automatically start browsing Target for new baskets or containers?  Take a walk around your home first and look for containers you already have that may work.  

Day 17: Eat local.

Choose to purchase from a farmers market or eat at a local farm-to-table restaurant.  The less your food has to travel to get to you, the smaller the carbon footprint.  Bonus points for food being in-season.  

Day 18: Make a zero-waste kitchen swap.

My favorite kitchen swap is using a bar dish-soap instead of those that come in plastic bottles.  The runner-up would be switching to reusable zip-top storage bags.  For more ideas, read my post:  Everything you need for a more sustainable kitchen:  simple tips, hacks, and swaps.  

Day 19: Choose slow fashion.

There are so many ways to step up your ethical fashion game!  Support companies with transparent business practices, choose natural materials that are obtained responsibly, and source things second hand if you can.  If you really want to get into it, I have an entire section of my blog dedicated to sustainable fashion.  Check it out here.  

Day 20: Get a house plant.

House plants do a number of beneficial things from boosting your mood to reducing stress, but the coolest thing they do?  They purify the air by absorbing toxins in your home and producing oxygen!  How cool is that?!

Day 21: Meal plan.

Meal planning isn’t just to make your week easier, it also helps reduce food waste.  Don’t forget to stick to your shopping list!

Day 22: Make a DIY non-toxic cleaner.

My favorite non-toxic cleaning base is vinegar.  You can infuse it with oils or scents to reduce the strong smell.  Bonus points for using a glass spray bottle!

Day 23: Use your freezer.

Reduce food waste by utilizing your freezer.  Freeze veggie scraps to use for soup stock, freeze fruit that’s about to go bad and use later for smoothies, freeze extra tomato paste in ice cube trays and store in a reusable container for when you only need a tablespoon or two, etc.  Get creative!

Day 24: Do a garbage audit.

Speaking of reducing food waste…it’s time to do a garbage audit!  This means choosing a set period of time and seeing how much garbage you and your family actually throw out.  Some people suggest garbage audits for a full week, but I say start with a day.  Start with an empty can or use a smaller can for this experience.  At the end of the day, inspect how much garbage was thrown out.  Was it mostly packaging?  Food?  How can you reduce this amount as a family? 

Day 25: Head to the library.

Libraries are a great way to satisfy a shopping urge AND find great information.  While you’re there, check out a book on green living!

Day 26: Stop using paper towels and paper napkins.

Choose reusable alternatives over disposable paper products.  Use rags, cloth napkins, and wash clothes for all your reusable cleaning needs.  These will save you money and reduce waste.  If you choose to use any disposable paper products (napkins, plates, paper towels, etc), make sure they are made out of 100% recycled products or can be compostable…or both!

Day 27: Visit a donation center or thrift shop.

By donating things you no longer need, you are keeping things out of the landfill and giving someone else the chance to enjoy it.  Of course, by also shopping at thrift stores, you are giving something new life and promoting a sustainable lifestyle!

Day 28: Watch an eco-friendly documentary.

Here are The 25 Best Climate Change and Sustainability Documentaries and Videos to get you started.

Day 29: Wash your dishes in a more eco-friendly way.

I scoured the depths of the internet to find the most eco-friendly way to wash dishes.  Here are two excellent examples for you to check out!  Which one will you try? 

Single-basin sink video

Double sink video

Day 30: Spread the word.

Tell people you did this challenge and encourage them to do their own!  Point them in the direction of your favorite green-living resource (hint hint – the Peaceful Burrow Blog or my Instagram @laurcimxo).  Teach your kids about the importance of being stewards of our earth and encourage sustainable lifestyle changes.  Be an inspiration!

30 Day Su

30 Day Sustainable Living Challenge

You did it!  Over the last 30 days, you took steps to live a more sustainable life.  I hope you enjoyed the journey and will continue to incorporate lifestyle changes to live a more enchanting, sustainable life!

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