The Coronavirus pandemic has plunged us all into strange and unprecedented times. I have found the developments over the last few weeks all-consuming and deeply concerning. There have been so many unknowns and it has made focusing on living a sustainable life quite challenging.
This morning, like many others, I should have been leaving my house and travelling to work at my day job. But instead I sat on my sofa and wrote this! I think many people are going to be trying to find a new routine over the coming weeks and months, so to help you and to help myself, I am going to share five sustainable actions that you could incorporate into your new routine. These are merely suggestions so please use the ones most relevant to you, use them all or not at all.
Now that our favourite cafes, pubs and restaurants are now all closed and the supermarkets are left with a rather strange array of ingredients, there has never been a better time to get creative with cooking. It is essential that we all try and stay as healthy as possible to limit the spread of this virus so it’s also a great time to focus on eating nutritious and immune boosting meals. If you have new-found spare time, then I suggest opening the cookbook that’s collecting dust on your shelf or heading to the internet to discover new recipes that you could create to liven up your weekly food routine. Please do not go out and panic buy ingredients, but instead empty out your cupboards and find new ways to use the foods that you already have! I will share any culinary delights or disasters that I create on my social channels to keep you inspired!
Unless you are travelling to and from work or going out to pick up essential food or medicines, we are now limited to one outing a day, so let’s ensure that we make that outdoor time count. Maybe this is the perfect time to start jogging, if this is a completely new concept to you then I highly recommend downloading a ‘couch to 5k’ app to ease you in. I did this, but I have let my running routine slip and I will most certainly use my limited outdoor time to pick this habit back up. Use this as an opportunity to find quiet places to exercise in, try and stay away from busy areas both to make it more relaxing and safer in the current circumstances! If running is not your thing, then use the outdoor time to explore and enjoy your neighbourhood. Is there a footpath you have never ventured down, riverbank that you have never sat upon, or just a view that you have not given yourself time to soak in? Now is the time to really enjoy the little doses of outdoor time, just make sure that you respect the social distancing rules and keep to one walk or run a day!
If you are anything like me then you will love reading, but struggle to fit it in to your normal routine. I have bookshelves full of books that are waiting to be read so I am planning to incorporate at least half an hour of reading into my new daily routine. Perhaps this is a time to learn new things through reading, a time to absorb a new subject or genre. If you want inspiration for sustainability themed books to read, please see my ‘rediscovering my love for reading’ post. If you finish reading a great book then think about sending it on to a friend or offering it to a neighbour, sharing really is caring in times like these and this is a great way to do that.
We are all about to spend a lot more time inside our homes then we are used to, and this makes it a great time to evaluate the things that have accumulated in your living space. Busy lives create all manner of clutter whether it be a purse full of receipts or a kitchen table covered in odd bits, or a cupboard that threatens to engulf you on opening its door! Take this time to sort through and de-clutter your things. Make sure that you only keep items that serve a purpose or that bring you joy. This might also prove to be a good way to make a bit of extra cash if you are facing a drop in your earnings. It’s so easy to sell unwanted items now through fb marketplace, eBay or depop among many more reselling sites and apps. I recommend on making a plan to declutter either by focusing on a room at a time or challenging yourself to get rid of 3 things a day for example. See my depop account for inspiration, and I’ll try and update you on my other decluttering successes.
Have you got a favourite item of clothing that has a hole in or is damaged? Or a piece of furniture that’s looking tired? Now could be the ideal time to learn a new skill and to bring your possessions back to life. I have a pile of clothes that need mending or dyeing to make them wearable again, but I never seem to find the time to focus on fixing them, so I aim to choose a couple of items a week to repair. YouTube is full of instructional videos on how to fix all sorts of things so take the time to delve in and teach yourself something new, this could be one of the most rewarding ways to use the time we have been given by this virus!
I hope that those five actions are helpful or give you some inspiration. Please take care of yourselves and the people around you. Be good – STAY AT HOME!! And be prepared for more frequent blog posts from me during my time at home!