Rehabilitate and Detox Your Lifestyle in Time for the New Year

Detoxing your lifestyle of non-green habits doesn’t have to be as dramatic as drug rehab. It can be simple and is a great way to start the new year.

Rosh Hashana, or the Jewish New Year, is only a few days away and as a time of reflection many of us may be thinking of ways that we want to change our lifestyles for the coming year.  If the words “detox” or “rehab” call to mind dramatic associations rehab clinics from the movies, you’re going too far.  Invent your own mellow and green version of rehab – one that leads you to a gentler, kinder way of treating yourself, your resources, and the environment.

Not sure where to start?  Here are some suggestions:

Try to cure yourself of any addictions. Addictions can come in many forms, from little things like craving an extra pinch of salt to needing that cup of coffee in the morning to needing a cigarette.  Whatever the addiction, chances are it’s hurting you and wasting resources (which is bad for both you and Mother Earth).  Instead of being dependent on whatever it is you’re addicted to, try to transform it into something you can savor occasionally – you are sure to enjoy it more.

Try to avoid waste. Waste can come in many forms, from wasting the leftover food on your plate to just using up more than you need to in general.  Again, if you are consuming more than you need to, it’s bad for you, your wallet, and the planet.  Instead of viewing this challenge as an attempt to deprive yourself, look at it as a question to ask what you really need.

Get healthy and stop putting junk in your body. This is a universal new year’s resolution, and for good reason.  Many of us get caught up in the fast pace of our lives and forget to treat our bodies with respect.  Make a conscious attempt to avoid chemically treated or highly processed foods this year (both of which are not only bad for you but terrible for the environment) and focus on eating foods that are natural, local, and as close to their original state as possible.

Integrate low carbon emission and heart-healthy forms of transportation into your routine. Many adults have a hard time working exercise into their schedules, and everyone likes saving a little money.  An easy way to do this is by integrating cardiovascular and low carbon emission forms of transportation into your routine, such as walking or cycling.  Even walking/biking to work or the grocery store once or twice a week would make a difference.

Image via: Dragan Todorovic

Read more about detoxing and simplifying your life::
Detox your life: Take the ‘Buy-Nothing-Ramadan’ Challenge
Detox – Not a Diet, A Way of Life (4 Tips)

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