Dispelling the myths of what it means to be eco.
This exploration has come about from re watching shop well for the planet. A BBC documentary that invites a more sustainable lifestyle into three average UK families.
The impression the families have of ‘eco people’ is very much the same and they are ‘not that type’. I totally understand that there is a group of people that are more inclined to make changes as the lifestyle they live just allows them to be more aware of the current problems. The Yogi’s that are in tune with their bodies, the outdoorsey ones that see the pollution regularly, the second hand shoppers that are aware of the impact the clothing industry has. That is me, a yoga loving, outdoorsy second hand shopper. I don’t think I look unkempt like I live in a field in a straw bale house scavenging for fruit. Although what does that look like anyway? More and more people are turning to alternative living to escape the pressures of modern day living. They are regular people that had office jobs, they have families, they wear ‘normal’ clothes. They just choose to not be dictated to by society in the way we have all been led to believe is the correct way to live. Good for them I say.
The way we live is definitely changing – people want choices. They want freedom. I love programmes like ‘New lives in the wild’ with Ben Fogle. Not all the ways the people live are my cup of tea but the premise is the same. They all had hectic, over burnt out lives before, the rat race lifestyle, the car, the money, the job, the house and then one day something in their life changes and they give it up, all of it. To live the life they want to live, it is often a harder way of life, being self sufficient, farming the land, being off grid and often with very little money but from where I’m viewing safely tucked up on my sofa, much richer than their former lives.
A wee bit of research…
We’ve been asking our customers if they consider themselves ‘eco’ people, bearing in mind they purchase sustainable products and household liquids from us, most of them didn’t consider themselves to be eco people.
I think this means that the standard is too high, in the sense that people consider it an unachievable way of living. The facts are that those people are already living more sustainably than most simply by shopping and supporting a company like ours.
So what do we consider to be a sustainable way of life? What makes us ‘eco’ people and not you?
This is tricky because everyone is doing their bit and no one can do all of it, not straight away at least. It takes a long time to form new habits and adjust to a new way of life. Some eco based lifestyle changes are small and manageable, others are quite big steps.
Here are some of the things our customers do based on their feedback.
- Mend clothing
- Paint furniture to give it a new lease of life
- Grow some of their own fruit and veg
- Cut down on meat but also support local farmers
- Recycle as much as possible
- Reduce the amount of driving
- Shop plastic free where possible
- Buy eco friendly cleaning products
- Recycling soft plastics
- Consciously thinking before buying
- Being mindful of supporting local business
- Fix and maintain tech instead of buying new
- Keeping old vehicles going for as long as possible
- Cooking meals from scratch
- Recycling old wood and metal
- Reducing the amount of packaging that goes into recycling
This is a handsome list. And a varied one to suit all different types of people. This is the point, everyone is different, everyone has different priorities. All of the above our considerations for a more environmentally friendly lifestyle, most of which is just winding the clock back a few decades living more like they did in the earlier years during the war, post war and beyond. Make do and mend became a way of life not something that just ‘eco’ people do. There was no such thing because there was so much less waste.
What would it take to change your perspective of the ‘eco’ lifestyle? It is 2022, perceptions surely need to be challenged? Does it matter if you are suited and booted and work 9 til 5 – does that mean that you can’t buy yourself a trendy reusable coffee cup and a water bottle? Does it mean that you could walk to work some days? Does it mean that you can not possible support local shops on your lunch break instead of the main super chains? Of course it doesn’t but society has told this person they are not eco so they are not. Break the mould, make your own changes your way.
It doesn’t matter if you live in a caravan, a stately home, a terraced house, a farm, a flat. Whether you like pop music or opera or banging 80’s tunes. Whether you are vegan, meat lover, a fast food junkie. A postman, a volunteer, a business mogul, a fruit and veg stall holder or the best worlds banker, you are you and are you going to let society dictate to you what you can do to live more sustainably because of the most out of date box ticking exercise that exists. No siree, do you, do it well and just do your best to make waves your way.
If you would like to fill out our quick fire eco form, it is 4 questions, will take about 3 mins.
Here is the link
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