As blatantly obvious advice usually is from an environmentalist perspective, it’s not always quite as simple to follow through with it. Although we often hear messages advising us to “do this” and “stop doing that”, how often do we motivate ourselves to actually enact those words of wisdom?
Don’t get me wrong, I am not wagging my finger at anyone! I certainly understand the complexity and effort required to continuously keep these pieces of advice at the forefront of our thoughts.
Don’t these reminders seem to slip our mind all too easily? In order to ease your sense of guilt, let me explain why this happens. Psychology teaches us that human beings are, on the most part, routine creatures. We prefer to establish routine habits because performing repetitive actions demands less brain energy, as well as provides us with a sense of security knowing what to expect.
Therefore, we are naturally hard-wired to accept routine and reject novelty – making it quite difficult to welcome changes.
So how do we do it? How do we alter our daily routines by adding new habits? Once again, Psychology provides us with an answer: “slow and steady” is imperative. Trying to adopt a demanding habit (such as biking to work everyday instead of driving), either feels too overwhelming to begin, or becomes too exhausting to maintain. Therefore introducing smaller and more achievable habits into our routine is a more sustainable option.
Since a large portion of our daily routine includes that of a job schedule, I thought it useful to leave you with a piece of advice (I told you, it’s inevitable to escape receiving advice from us) that we could all employ at our work. Many office sites continue to waste paper by printing documents mindlessly and unnecessarily. One guilty habit is printing e-mails to keep on file.
However, recently, I received an e-mail that contained the following endnote:
Please consider the environment before printing this email
Needless to say, I was taken-aback by its unexpectedness. This simple, yet caring, endnote made me stop in my tracks and reconsider my printing habits. So my tidbit of an advice today is to be more conscious of how readily you click “Print” and to spread this message one e-mail at a time.
There you have it folks – a habit changed at the click of a button!