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A complete Beginner's guide to a more Sustainable lifestyle

Updated: Nov 5, 2021

is not difficult to notice the hottest lifestyle trend in the last few years - Sustainable lifestyle. Hundreds of books are published, new sustainable products are invented everyday. Nevertheless, it is easier said than done. Not all people are willing to sacrifice their convenience to switch to a more sustainable lifestyle, or even a zero waste life style. Please find below my useful tips if you are new to this exciting journey!

Be green
Source: unsplash

1. Look at your daily waste

Check your daily waste for 1 week, write down what you see in there, keep a good track of what you throw away normally, what day is the highest, etc., then you will be definitely shocked at how much waste you are generating each day! This step helps you set the mindset and awareness of your waste to make the most suitable plan for yourself.

Study your waste for best results (Source: unsplash)

2. Focus on eliminating single use items first

By now, you should have a clear idea of how your average bin looks like. As it is really challenging to try cutting all waste at once, why not start with a small step, focusing mainly on eliminating single use items first? If you look around, there are actually thousands of items with super short lifecycle, and you can perfectly live without them. Why buy plastic water bottles when you can refill your own? Why take plastic bags from shopping while you can bring your own reusable bags? Why use coffee pod when making coffee with a French press is so easy? Start with that, look around, see what you can replace with reusable items. You will be surprised by how much you have actually saved already, both in terms of waste and money!

old me new me

3. Ask yourself: Do I really need it?

There are things that we are buying when we actually don’t need them that much. Have you ever asked yourself whether you need 2 different types of shower gel, one in the winter and one in the summer? Simply, before deciding to buy anything, ask yourself DO I REALLY NEED IT?, then wait for few days, you will see how fast you forget about your need for it. If you still can’t get it off your mind, look for the most sustainable option. My simple trick is to NEVER go shopping when I’m hungry, as if I do, the old me will just end up buying tons of stuff that will eventually go to waste as I can’t eat them all.

Only buy what you need
Source: unsplash

4. Learn to make things yourself

This is a really fun way to live more sustainably, and I definitely love it. Learn to bake, cook or any other cook skills that you have never tried. Who knows, you might become the next Master Chef? Since I started baking last year, I no longer need to buy bread (which is obviously packed in plastic bags), I have saved probably hundreds of $ and I have also reduced lots of food waste. To make further impact, you can buy things in bulk (flour, sugar, etc.) and they are normally packed in paper bags (or you can go shopping in fill-in shops, which means there is no waste created). Things that are really to make at home:

  • Pasta (this is my most favourite)

  • Bread, cake or any other sweet treats

  • Pie (chicken, beef, you name it!)

Besides, learn how to utilise things yourself! For example, you don't need to buy any more seeds to plan, just keep the roots of your vegetables, put them under water and in few days time, ta-dah, here is your lovely lettuce, unlimited supply!

home made pasta
I definitely enjoying making fresh pasta!

5. Join a community

Congrats! You have done well! Why not celebrate your first few steps by joining with communities of people who have more experiences in this journey, learn from them and share your practices. You will be surprised by how lovely and supportive the community of people following sustainable lifestyle is! Check Facebook, your local community or simply create one with your friends and family! My favourite sustainability warriors include Zero Waste Chef, Zero Waste Singapore, ... or you can follow my Facebook page Good Human!

Are you just starting your sustainable journey? Do you find those tips useful? Share with us your tips and share those tips with your friends and family!


Tram Anh


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