An eco-friendly, sustainable Christmas
Christmas really is a wonderful time of year, with all the fun and festive feeling. But does that mean that it can’t be eco-friendly? Are there ways that we can make Christmas more sustainable? We think so! Here at Sleep Organic we want to take a look at the ways that you can make Christmas much greener without having to compromise some of the best parts of the season.
We believe that Christmas is all about Compassion, Care and Connection with yourself and your surroundings. It could be as simple as not getting over-stressed about festive arrangements, expenditures, invitations, perfectionism and difficult family dynamics etc. Having a sustainable and environmentally friendly Christmas is what we, at Sleep Organic, call a ‘Conscious Christmas’. Every year, as a society, we produce tonnes of waste, and every year the levels increase! Often it is easy to become overwhelmed during the festive season, therefore becoming less mindful of our actions. I am sure that when we appreciate how much waste we actually produce each year, we may think again about the impact of our actions!
So let’s try to exercise these Four Core Principles (NOEL) during Christmas preparations:
1) No Plastic
2) Organic and/or sustainable long-lasting presents
3) Eco-friendly - Re-use & Recycle
4) Low waste or No waste
Let’s see how we can apply these principles by asking ourselves some questions during our preparation for Christmas.
What can we do instead of sending cards? Can we give our loved ones or friends a bell or send e-cards to them instead? Who do I have to send cards to? Can I choose FSC-certified cards? (they are available in all good stores). They might be a little expensive but these should be a last resort if other greeting methods are not possible.
There’s always a question about choosing an artificial or real Christmas tree. There is no match to a real Christmas tree! It brings nature in the room with soul nurturing pine scents! In our experience a real Christmas tree brings calmness to the room and they are 100% recyclable! When we're finished with ours, we send them to our local school for their craft activities. I personally collect a few from my street and donate them to the forest school. Only go artificial if you can’t be real!
Buy your tree from FSC-certified growers; here are a couple for you in the UK:
Glasfryn Fencing & Sawmill (FSC® C018622)
The Crown Estate (FSC® C102073)
Christmas gift list – don’t forget to include your planet in it!
Can we buy sustainable, Organic, Fairtrade products? Can we buy useful products with long lasting use?
Treating people and buying them nice gifts is a great feeling. However, there is a tendency to go a little crazy at Christmas, and we end up buying far too much, especially if you have children. It is a better idea to think carefully about what you are buying. Do the recipients really need all of this stuff? What will they appreciate most from you? Sometimes one or two meaningful gifts can mean so much more than lots and lots of presents.
And also think about buying experiences as a gift (like a yoga retreat, a meal in an organic restaurant, swimming lessons etc.)
We all look forward to Christmas dinner. Everyone likes to treat themselves and their family to great food and festivity.
Can we buy Fairtrade and Organic Food? Fairtrade and Organic produce is available in a number of supermarkets and there are some great organic recipes on platforms like Organic Feed your Happy
It is very common to over-shop for Christmas dinner. If this was the case for you last year then make a conscious effort to shop less this year and use all left-overs! Christmas parties are a big source of wastage too. Avoid cheap-and-cheerful throw away plastic glasses and plates. These are all things that will help reduce waste.
Wishing you a happy eco-friendly Christmas!
Nisa Shah, Sleep Organic