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The 5 Easiest Things You Can Do To Make The Biggest Impact On Mother Earth (In Under 5 Minutes)

Earth Day 2015

I wasn’t always a Mother of three, an eco-activist, animal and earth lover and proponent for sustainable living. Not so long ago, I was a chain-smoking, platform wearing, dancing fool of trash-tossin’ nogoodnik proportions. When it came to thinking about the reaction my behaviors had on both my health and the environment, I just didn’t know (or care) as much as I did about the cute guy on the motorcycle picking me up.

As the late Maya Angelou said, “When we know better, we do better,” so I began my educating myself about the environment by reading books, watching documentaries, visiting farms (factory and rescue), and getting involved in non-profit work. I adopted a dog and starting learning about animal rights issues. If I can do it, there’s hope for us all to be even a little bit cleaner in all our choices, and to tread kindly on this planet we share.

With that in mind, I’m sharing the 5 best things you can do in less than 5 minutes to help Mother Earth (and yourself):

1. Meatless Monday (adopting a plant-based diet)

The UN has said that adopting a plant-based diet is, “vital to save the world from hunger, fuel poverty, and the worst impacts of climate change.” It’s no secret that the easiest way we can go green is with our forks–even if you and your family start by adopting Meatless Monday.

If you feel called upon to make a difference (and to try something new), you and an accountability buddy can start a 30 day veg pledge together – it’s easier than you think. A great way to look for recipes is to Google your favorite recipes and add the word “vegan” to the start of it (“vegan mac n cheese”). You’ll find simple, healthy replacements for all of your favorites. Another tip to going veg is to use lentils–they have tons of protein and cost pennies.

Need support? I’ve been helping people go veg for 10 years–feel free to leave your questions below. I’m happy to answer you.

2. Recycle Properly

Did you know that just by putting the wrong number plastic container in a bin of other plastic containers can mar the entire bag – who knew? There’s a place to recycle electronics, batteries, your old eyeglasses, fur coats, baby clothes and shoes.

Let’s start at the bare bones of recycling: first of all – you need to know the 3 R’s (Reuse, Reduce, Recycle). Think about getting a cute kitchen composter for food scraps. You can also earn your city’s local recycling rules by doing a simple Google search.

Another way I love to recycle is to have clothing swaps with my girlfriends – I’m always surprised at how many people would actually appreciate the old pleather mini-dress I bought on vacation after an extra mimosa.

3. Green Your Garb (and gifts)

Ethical fashion is hotter than ever, and what you wear doesn’t just end at Stella McCartney organic jeans and faux leather shoes. Your deodorant, face creams, even your tampons have a dramatic effect on Mother Earth. Also, when the holidays roll around, choose conscious gifts and clothing that says, “I care about you and the world around us.

4. Work From Home

You don’t have to twist my elbow that hard to do this. I love working from home; it saves energy, money, and fuel – and allows me to be more active in my children’s lives. Try and orchestrate one day a week where you can work from home. When you do leave home for work or play – consider biking, walking, purchasing an energy efficient car, reusable cutlery, and green travel.

5. Get Involved

Find a cause that makes your heart beat a little faster and then go for it! Dive in and drink the Kool Aid. GMO’s, oil spills, animal cruelty, air pollution, wildlife extinction – whatever is your cri de coeur – follow it. We all have a skill that can be used for the greater good. Can you spare a few hours during the day, weekend, or night? Whatever your expertise, Mother Earth (and your community) would be more than happy for your help.

Kind Contributor Chloe Jo Davis

Chloé Jo Davis, is the founder of Girlie Girl Army, The Glamazon Guide to Conscious Living; the award-winning eco-vegan fashion site that keeps your high heels as clean and green as your yoga toned bod. Chloé collaborates with About.com as their host and content creator of a series of 35 glam green videos. She has also appeared on Katie Couric as well as graced the pages of Italian Elle alongside Demi Moore. Chloé is regularly featured on radio, print, and TV – often discussing her favorite lines and products as a brand partner and PR influencer. She was also voted an “Ethical Fashion Icon” by VegNews Magazine. Chloé is a proponent of attachment parenting and breastfeeding. She’s the mother of three sons and lives in NYC with her husband and their many rescued pets.

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