tropical beach covered in plastic

How to step out of your plastic comfort zone

It may not be easy, but I believe we must all join together and step out of our plastic comfort zone. It’s time to reduce our consumption of plastic in all its forms, today!

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few months, you’ll be well aware of planet Earth’s plastic crisis.

David Attenborough’s beautiful documentary series ‘Blue Planet II’ highlighted the damage we humans have created in the oceans today.

If we don’t start taking more responsibility for our plastic trash, soon our seas will contain more plastic than fish. A pretty scary thought.

We managed to reduce cigarette consumption, advertising and promotion…

When I was a little girl, I remember seeing cigarette adverts on television and in magazines, and on posters at bus stops.

Characters smoking in movies and TV shows was commonplace – as was smoking in offices, restaurants and aeroplanes.

And then throughout the 1980s, prompted by medical and scientific research, ‘we’ (the public consumer) began to realise that smoking was bad for human health.

Slowly, images of blackened lungs and long lists of health complications filtered into our lives on a daily basis.

At school we learned the negative impact of smoking cigarettes and consequently made different choices to our parents’ generation. 

The same thing has happened with sugar, alcohol and stress related illness.

We’re more aware of the risks and actively take steps to protect our physical and mental health.

So, if we can make such substantial shifts with cigarettes, sugar and stress, why is it taking us so long to change our plastic habits?

Is it because the results aren’t seen and felt within our own bodies? 

We’re bombarded with photographic images of floating plastic islands and third world populations living in squalid conditions surrounded by dead lakes and rivers; water suffocated through plastic pollution.

And yet we still don’t make a change.

We were horrified by video footage of a turtle with a plastic straw stuck inside its nostril, and yet, beyond cutting out plastic straws and plastic shopping bags, still we continue along the same path that will result in irreversible environmental damage.

A grim future for humans and many species of animal life. 

It’s as if we don’t really care enough.

We know you can’t quit smoking by having ‘a couple’ a day, nor reverse diabetes by indulging in sugary processed snacks every evening.

Equally, we cannot solve the plastic pollution epidemic by just dipping our toes in and out when it’s convenient for us. 

It’s time we pulled on our big girl pants (or superhero cape) and stepped waaaaaaaay out of our comfort zones to really make a difference. 

We have to stop and consider our choices every time we make a purchase.

Even if that means missing out on our favourite snack or spending more money on a more durable (or recyclable) option.

Or learning to be more patient while we source a better, non-plastic choice.

We’ve reached new levels of destruction…

On a short trip to mainland England last year, I witnessed the level of destruction we’re causing to our beautiful planet through our bad habits and incessant use of plastic.

On various train journeys across the country, I saw large sections of railway line littered with old plastic items. These weren’t simply bags and bottles that blew here on ‘dustbin day’ a week or two ago, these were items that have been laying there for years.

Their colours faded but their shape still very much intact.

As I watched plastic bags caught in trees, forlornly blowing in the wind, I felt a sense of sadness, as if they were waving for help that would never come.

This has to stop!

I’m calling time on plastic.

Now, it’s fair to say that the majority of people who read this article will already be somewhat aware of the plastic issues and will be actively making a difference.

I know I maybe preaching to the converted: you carry a reusable water bottle wherever you go, take food to work in your stainless steel lunchbox and you do your grocery shopping with cotton bags. 

But, even as an advocate for intentional living, I realise that I’m not perfect and it’s time for ME to step up MY game.

 I feel like you and I are missing many parts of this complex equation because we …

  • Focus on just a tiny part of the plastic problem (i.e. straws, bags, coffee cups).
  • Do too much of it alone instead of collaborating and connecting with others.
  • Don’t commit 100%.

So, what can we do TODAY, this week, this month and this year to truly step up our game and be part of the change?

  • Learn more. A lot more. While there are statistics available, it’s up to us to dig deeper, do the research and contact manufacturers. We must write to politicians, make connections and share knowledge. A world with less plastic and less plastic pollution is the only way forward. 
  • Stop and think before you buy. Do I really need this item? Is there a non-plastic alternative? Will this item be delivered wrapped in plastic? How will I dispose of this item when I no longer need it? Can it be repaired?
  • Commit to a life with as little plastic as possible – particularly single use plastic but also larger items such as garden pots and storage containers. (Use swap groups and second hand sites to ensure we use the existing items in circulation rather than creating demand for new ones.)

I believe that life is a beautiful journey; that we receive the information and opportunities when we need them in order to progress to the next stage.

BUT…. at some point you have to stop playing small and step up your game.

That’s the point I’m at now. 

I’ve had enough of sitting quietly and doing my thing. It’s time to make the ripples in the world that I’ve been talking about for so long. 

You see, I’ve been here before.

I was an early advocate of plant-based eating but I played small through my own fears of being judged and lack of action taking. I only managed to engage a relatively small audience of around five thousand people and sold a few hundred copies of my plant-based e-books. 

(They’re on sale HERE if you’d like to support me on my mission to make the world a better place for all of us and future generations.)

It wasn’t enough. 

And my plastic action-taking isn’t enough either.

Are you truly doing enough? Could you do more? 

Don’t leave it any longer. Today is the day we must all embrace the challenge and step out of our plastic comfort zone.

Lorraine xx

Want to read more about climate change issues? You might like my blog: Climate Change Protests: How NOT to be a d*ck on social media!

Want to read more about climate change an environmental issues? Check out this blog…

7 Simple Steps YOU can take TODAY to ensure life on planet Earth thrives beyond 2030

I am soooo happy to see that yesterday’s blog about meal prepping without plastic packaging was such a big hit with my audience! It hit the same level as The True Cost of Fast Fashion and Busyness v. Stillness which tells me one AMAZING thing about you….

That you’re looking for ways to help the environment, you’re compassionate and you’re craving ways to find inner peace in a crazy, messed-up world.

And if you’re taking the time to read blogs like this (thank you so much from the bottom of my heart) then chances are, you’re looking for ways to take action!

This makes me feel an incredible wave of excitement and a warm fuzzy feeling in my heart.

The more of us who are making small, daily changes really are the ones who will change the world; reversing climate change and environmental damage and balancing wealth between nations so no-one dies of starvation while others are throwing billions of tonnes of food away each year. (Because that’s the naked truth right now.)

I’ve been lucky enough to make changes slowly and gradually, which as we all know is generally the way to make new lifestyle habits stick.

But right now we don’t have that luxury.

Recent reports state we may have as little as twelve years to reverse some of the damage to our planet to allow nature to replenish and repopulate itself.

Twelve years.

Scary right?

So, what can you do to be part of the change?

  • Read, listen, watch, learn. Research the facts, follow people across social media who are taking action, making a difference and sharing their knowledge and love with the world.
  • Learnt something new? Found a great article? Watched a good documentary? SHARE IT! It only takes a click or two on social media and instantly it falls into the laps of hundreds of people. Creating a ripple effect is easy.
  • Stop buying food produce wrapped in plastic. Sure, the avocados may not be as ripe, but once you get into the habit of doing it every few days, soon you’ll find a routine where you always have ripe avocados at home!
  • Ditto for pre-chopped vegetables and fruit in plastic. Yes, it’s a time saver but making time to prepare and cook your own meals from scratch will help you find that inner peace you’ve been craving. It teaches patience and allows us quiet time in the kitchen to reconnect to our food.
  • Think before you buy, anything! Clothes, shoes, technology, take-out food, toys, make-up and toiletries…. Stop and consider (a) if you really need this item, (b) if this item brings you joy and makes you feel really, truly happy on the inside (rather than simply keeping up with the Jones’s or following a trend), (c) how you might dispose of it (or its packaging) when you no longer have a use for it, and (d) by buying this item, are you taking away from another dream? I.e. by spending money here and now on this item, will it stop you achieving another goal (like buying a house, travelling, saving for retirement, fixing the house, seeing the dentist etc.).
  • Following on from the above point, is there a way you can buy or acquire a pre-loved version of this item? Clothes and household items are easily available second-hand and often will be more unique and save you money. (Win-win for achieving those financial dreams!)
  • Join in with a community project. We’re all passionate about different things and some will tug at your heart more than others. Follow your heart and make a difference in your community. Beach clean ups, cooking for a homeless charity, supporting a screening of a documentary about refugees, giving your time as a volunteer…. or even starting up your own local project or awareness campaign. The choices are endless. But stop sitting around talking about it and just do it!

When you take consistent action on these seven steps, then not only will you feel more contentment and peace in your life, but you’ll have helped others and you’ll know that, even when the results are not yet visible, you’ll have made more than a dent in planet Earth’s recovery.

If we all come together to make a difference, collectively we can make our grandchildren’s future a far more exciting prospect.

Are you with me?

Lorraine xx

What does Freedom mean to you?

The theme of FREEDOM has come up so many times for me recently that I’m taking it as a nudge from the Universe to write about it today!

In the online business space we hear (or read) the word freedom a lot…

  • Freedom from financial stress.
  • Freedom from insecurities and fears.
  • Freedom from feeling stuck with no clients.
  • Freedom from tech gremlins.
  • Freedom from the corporate lifestyle.

And, if you’re anything like me, you’re probably feeling a desire to break free from the consumerism culture that dominates our modern world.

Perhaps you’re thinking about how you can celebrate Christmas without the endless amounts of plastic packaging and buying presents just because you feel you should.

Or maybe you’re trying to step away from negativity and toxicity to give you the space and freedom needed to connect with more people who hold the same values as you in terms of authenticity, integrity, honesty, love and compassion.

So what does freedom mean to you in your life?

On Instagram, the hashtag #freedomlifestyle has over 145,000 posts but is dwarfed by #laptoplifestyle with 1.2 million posts! A sure sign that more and more people are looking for an existence with meaning; a lifestyle that allows them more time to do the things they are passionate about and less time simply working to pay the bills.

Do you feel you have enough freedom in your life?

Time to grab a notepad and allow your thoughts to spill out onto paper…

Do you have time freedom to do all the activities, sports, hobbies and courses you’d love to do?

Do you have financial freedom to live the lifestyle you desire, or to travel on wild adventures?

Do you have health freedom to live every day to the full, free from pain or illness?

Do you have voice freedom to speak up and share your truth or stand up for what you believe in?

Do you have spiritual freedom to just be yourself; to be comfortable in your own skin and shine brilliantly as who you really are?

Are there any areas where you feel you don’t have the freedom you desire?

If so, what could you change?

How could you make today different?

Remember, you are the only one with the power to change your life. External events may test us or take us to deep, dark places, but ultimately, you are the only one who can shift your mindset and live the life that makes you truly contented and filled with joy.

I’d love to hear what freedom means to you.

Do hit reply and share your thoughts, I personally respond to every email I receive.

Lorraine xx

 

Like this blog? You might also love Busyness v. Stillness

Climate change: Stop playing small

Chances are you’ve seen many news reports and read articles about climate change and the plastic problem in our oceans.
 
If you’re anything like me you’ve probably been reducing your use of single use plastic, gone back to buying fresh produce in paper or reusable cloth bags and cut down your intake of meat and dairy over the last few months (or even years).
 
BUT….
 
I feel like we’ve been approaching this in the same way we try to lose weight…
 
We don’t really want to change our lifestyles THAT much and how much is that occasional chocolate cupcake really going to harm our progress anyway?
 
In the same way as few of us hit our weight loss goals very easily, it’s a major concern that we aren’t going to hit these targets for reducing pollution, plastic and environmental damage.
 

I feel it’s time that we stopped playing small.

 
It’s time to dig deep, make uncomfortable changes and really begin to make the changes we wish to see in the world.
 

It all starts with us.

 
Yes, of course we want manufacturers to stop making plastic BUT first there has to be less demand for said plastic!
 
Food shopping in the UK is almost easy in comparison to the amount of plastic that infiltrates every other area of our modern, spoilt, luxurious western lives.
 
I’m afraid I don’t have all the answers but I can tell you this with absolute certainty…
 

It starts with YOU.

Here are my three tips to motivate you to pull up your big girl pants and make a difference in the world TODAY:
 
  • Increase your AWARENESS: Watch documentaries, read books, listen to podcasts and interviews. Spend more time listening to knowledgeable people.
 
  • Boost your LEARNING: As your awareness and knowledge grows, start to share it with others. Set a good example to your kids, begin initiatives in the office, write a blog, give a talk, have conversations and teach others all you’ve learnt. 
 
  • ADAPT your lifestyle: No, it’s not easy at first. Change is inherently difficult but remember WHY you’re doing this: For the future of all beings on this planet. This isn’t about some future date thousands of years away, this is about our generation right NOW. In 12 years (or perhaps less) we could damage our planet beyond repair and be at the mercy of massive natural disasters leading to mass migration and widespread destruction.
  • Keep repeating this cycle. Never stop learning, growing and raising your awareness of the issues in your community, your country and your planet.

 

Unlike Dr Who who has a space ship to travel through time and space to find a new home, we only have planet Earth.

Let’s treat our Mother Earth, and all beings on it, with the love and respect it deserves.

Lorraine xx

 

Photo credit: Dikaseva on Unsplash