When I first stumbled across the term crunchy life I thought I had just discovered a really funny typo. I went through the comments on the thread waiting for the reaction, but there wasn’t one. After researching, I discovered I was wrong, and I couldn’t believe I had never heard this phrase before.
So what does it mean to live a crunchy life? I’m sorry to be the one to burst your bubble, but it’s not about eating enormous amounts of potato chips (though a large part of me totally wishes it was). Living a crunchy life means leading a life that is environmentally friendly. In other words what a lot of people know as a “green” lifestyle!
Now that we know what living a crunchy lifestyle is, how can we achieve our crunchiest life?
I’m not anywhere near an expert (Spoiler alert: you won’t see any Extreme Cheapstakes stuff here). But I do think that if everyone consciously contributes, even a little, to keeping our environment clean we’d be in a much better place.
I’ve broken down how you can achieve your crunchiest life in just three easy steps! I also include my favorite zero waste tips, and I share my #1 crunchy life product.
Step 1: Self- Awareness
The changes you need to make to achieve a more environmentally friendly life will be completely different from person to person. Ask yourself what are you wasting and how are you affecting your environment?
Once you’ve evaluated your impact you can set appropriate goals for your lifestyle.
Step 2: Find small attainable changes you can make
I’m a big believer that small changes make the task less overwhelming. I find it helpful to look at my everyday life and how much excess waste I’m producing. It seriously can be as simple as looking in your trash can.
Instead of committing yourself to a month with zero waste and overwhelming yourself, make gradual little changes.
Step 3: Follow through
Problem: You buy a lot of plastic water bottles.
Crunchy Solution: Invest in a water filtration pitcher and/or a reusable water bottle to cut down on plastic waste. My favorite reusable water bottle is my Hydroflask. It’s amazing, and even though I have mentioned it before I cannot recommend it enough. Not only am I able to get in my daily water, but my water will actually stay much colder than if it was just in a disposable plastic bottle.
Problem: You use a lot of plastic bags.
Solution: Buy reusable shopping bags or recycle your plastic bags. If you’re like me and can’t recycle plastic bags in your recycling bin at your home, there are several grocery stores that have recycling bins for plastic bags right at the entrance. Most big grocery stores like Walmart and Super Target participate and maybe even your local grocery store does too!
Problem: You throw out Ziploc bags each time you use them.
Solution: Reuse your Ziploc bags! If you didn’t store meat or something saucy, simply hand wash your Ziploc bags with your dishes. Yes, I said it. So many people see me do this and think it’s the strangest thing. I just think it’s silly to throw out something that is perfectly capable of being reused. After washing place the Ziploc over a drinking glass to allow the entire bag to dry.
Problem: You are buying everything brand new.
Solution: Repurpose old things you already have or buy secondhand. Fast fashion has an extremely negative effect on our environment. Just think how many thousands of products are created each season alone. According to the National Geographic, it takes 700 gallons of water to create just one cotton tee shirt.
You guys know thrifting is one of my favorite things. Not only are you saving cash you’re saving the environment!
Not willing to commit to buying everything secondhand? Even buying just one item secondhand can help the environment. According to One Million Women, an organization dedicated to living a better eco life, “If one million women bought their next item of clothing second hand instead of new we would save 6 million kg of carbon pollution from entering the atmosphere.”
That is extremely huge! It is easy to feel like as an individual we don’t have the power to make a positive impact, but if just work on leading individually crunchy lives we truly can help our environment.
One way I plan on improving in the future is to use the unpaper towel method. I don’t think I will ever fully eliminate paper towels in my household. Some things just require disposableness, ya know? But that doesn’t have to stop me from being more mindful of what I’m using them for. Too often I reach for paper towels when a washcloth would do just fine.
What are some of the crunchy changes you plan to make?
Let’s all work together to take care of Mother Nature (and maybe eat a potato chip here or there too)! Just make sure to recycle the bag 😉