If concerns about climate change are keeping you up at night, you’re not alone. It’s easy to get discouraged by all the bad news about burning forests, rising sea levels, air pollution, struggling wildlife, and the general destruction of our natural environment for political and financial gain. The media constantly reminds us about all the ways in which we’re killing our beloved planet, and it’s normal to feel a sense of guilt and despair around this news.
The good news is that there’s a lot you can do to relieve your climate anxiety and stand up for our planet. Every one of us has the power to heal the environment through actions big and small. Whether good or bad, the choices made by homeowners, business owners, and everyday consumers can snowball into significant environmental impacts.
In this article from Real Life With Heather, we share some tips to help you cope with climate-related stress as well as a few impactful steps you can take to join the fight against climate change.
Relieving Climate Anxiety
Managing climate anxiety is not about minimizing your reaction to this serious global issue. Far from it! We should be worried about where the world is headed. Psycom.net explains that the first step to coping with climate anxiety is allowing yourself to feel your feelings—whether anxiety, grief, worry, or anger—without judging them or trying to push them away. Acknowledge that your emotions are valid. You’ll find that once you accept your anxiety instead of trying to fight it, the intensity of your anxiety will fade immensely.
Next, recognize that it’s not your job to save the planet. You alone are not responsible for climate change. If you believe that the weight of the world is yours to bear, you will feel like a failure whenever you hear news about ecological losses. Instead, try to feel good about all the actions you’re taking to reduce your personal impact on the planet! Recognize that people and organizations all over the world are stepping up to engage in climate activism, and by getting involved, you too can make a difference.
Taking action against climate change is a great way to move forward from feelings of anxiety and grief. In the next section, we’ll explore a few ways you can use your strengths, capacities, and resources to get involved!
Become an Ecopreneur
For some people, getting involved in the fight against climate change means starting a business that seeks to solve an existing sustainability problem. If you’re business-minded and have a passion for the environment, consider becoming an ecopreneur yourself! Ecopreneurs are business owners who prioritize the planet and people over profits. Whether it’s rescuing items from the landfill for upcycling or offering eco-friendly landscaping services to local homeowners, your sustainable business is bound to make a difference.
Before launching your business, you’ll have to learn how to set up a new company. Take the time to create a business plan for your new eco-friendly company. Choose a suitable business structure. Many small businesses start out as sole proprietorships, but LLCs enjoy more perks including personal liability protection and tax benefits. Also research your target market and form strategies on how you’ll market your products or services.
It’s also crucial that you set up an invoicing process that gets you paid quickly. Keep terms simple and offer customers multiple payment options. You can create eye-catching branded invoices with an online invoice generator. Choose an invoice template and then personalize it with your own logo, slogan, and design elements.
Make Eco-Friendly Shopping Choices
Feeling guilty about your individual impact on the planet is not the answer. Research shows that just 90 companies are responsible for nearly two-thirds of global greenhouse gas emissions! As consumers, we have a lot of power to sway the behaviors of these major corporations. Let’s hold these companies accountable! Shop from companies that are doing good for the planet, and stop purchasing products from those that are causing harm. You can find a lot of great information about corporate responsibility and sustainability online.
Reduce Consumption and Waste
Beyond shopping from sustainable companies, an even better way to reduce your impact is to curb your consumption altogether. Break up with packaged foods, fast fashion, and poor-quality products that are designed to deteriorate quickly. When you need to buy something, whether it’s clothing, appliances, hobby supplies, or furniture, look for second-hand options before buying new. When you head to the grocery store, stick to the produce aisles and pick up whole foods that don’t require processing and packaging. Be mindful of your shopping habits and aim to reduce, reuse, and recycle—in that order!
Food waste is a significant problem contributing to climate change. According to Innovate Eco, food waste that ends up in the landfill produces methane and carbon dioxide due to the lack of oxygen during decomposition. Not only that, but wasted food means wasting the vast resources that went into producing, transporting, and storing the food. Try to waste less—and compost your scraps!
Support Biodiversity In Your Backyard
If you have a backyard, there’s a lot you can do to support the local biodiversity of plants and animals in your area. Backyard habitats are home to many native species. Unfortunately, many properties feature large expanses of pesticide-ridden lawn that provide few benefits to the plants and animals that support our delicate ecosystem. Consider doing some eco-friendly landscaping in your backyard to provide a home for bees, birds, insects, and other beneficial fauna.
As the world’s environmental issues continue to worsen, increasing levels of climate anxiety are sure to follow. Unfortunately, worrying about the state of the environment is the reality of being human at the time in history. Use your feelings as fuel! Take action against climate change however you can. When we all act together, we can make a difference!