It’s a comment I hear a lot. “I can’t afford to be green. I can’t afford to eat organic.” My response is usually something like, “I am not made of money either. But I choose to eat organic and be as green as I can.” So how do you do it? Is it possible? (My answer is a resounding “YES” because after all, that’s the whole reason I blog!) Here are 4 ways to go green on a sensible budget.
What are the priorities in your life? For me, my family’s health is a HUGE priority, along with lessening our environmental impact. Because health is so important to me, good organic food is a must. So that is at the top of the list for what we spend our money on.
2. DIY, within reason.
There are tons of DIY recipes out there for EVERYTHING. The problem is that it can be overwhelming. For a while, I was feeling really stressed about trying to DIY everything I could – so that is why I say “within reason”. Commit to learn to DIY a few simple things – later you may feel more confident or comfortable with doing more. For example, I’ve only just started doing some DIY bath & body products with essential oils. I NEVER considered doing it before because it seemed like way too much work. But now I can see the huge financial savings, and I see how easy it can be (because I only pick super easy things to DIY!). Here’s why I made the switch to DIY shampoo and conditioner, my face care system for under $30, and my DIY dry skin relief cream I can’t do without.
3. Eat at home most of the time.
It’s no secret that eating out costs more. While you can take steps like getting the AMEX Gold Card to make it easier on your finances, it’s always going to cost more. Cutting down on the number of times you eat out is a good idea but if you can’t do that then go to restaurants that aren’t as expensive as the ones you’re going to now.
Also, if you’re cooking more at home then you should know that organic and local farm chickens are usually much larger than the ones you get at the grocery store. Although $30 for a chicken sounds like a lot, it can go a long way! For example, my family of 3 can pretty much eat one of those $10 grocery store rotisserie chickens for 1 dinner, and maybe have enough for 1 person’s lunch the next day. With an organic chicken, on the other hand, I ALWAYS get 3 full dinners, plus 2-4 lunches out of it. So really – the organic chicken is at least on par with the regular chicken!
4. Buy less.
It sounds simple, but really – it is so easy in our consumerist society to throw things into our shopping carts and fill our homes. When I go through the house to purge and give things away, there are always things that I think – why did I really need to buy this? Really think about things that you are putting in your cart (physical or digital). Food waste is a big one – how many of us buy loads of produce with good intentions, and then let half of it go bad? This was a big goal for many of the families I worked with for the Queen of Green coaching project. I have found that buying less produce and planning meals has helped tremendously with this.