Earth Day: 5 Ways You Can Help the World Now

Photo © NASA

TODAY IS EARTH DAY, AND YOU MAY BE WONDERING, well, why isn’t every day ‘Earth Day’? It can (and should) be.

The first Earth Day in 1970 is considered the birth of the modern environmental movement. Since then, environmental sustainability has become our most important issue.

But all of us taking small actions can add up to a lot of change. Here are 5 ways you can help the world now:

1. Get walking and use public transport. There’s only one way to say this (and yes, you’ve heard it before): give up your car. Now.

Can’t quite go cold Turkey? How about taking public transport for one day, or biking to work or the store. Take a car break for a week. Then a whole month. Yes, it’s a big change, but especially today, completely necessary.

2. Take a buying break. Getting stuff from there to here increases carbon footprint. And skip the online shopping (even if you’re not driving, the delivery trucks are).

3. Reduce food consumption and waste. Here’s how: buy locally, and then bring your lunch to work. Have coffee from the machine at the office or make it at home. Don’t forget to pack the apple or peanut butter so you can have a day off from the vending machines, and all of that plastic wrapping that ends up in landfills.

Suddenly your wallet got a little fatter and you might even be healthier, too.

4. Become a green volunteer. What are you good at? Math whiz? Hockey? Gardening? Your skills can help advance nature conservation or agriculture—you name it. Here’s a guide to becoming a green volunteer. Plus, there’s no greater rush than helping others.

5. Meditate. Meditation is a wonderful practice to clear the mind and bring awareness. When our minds are clearer and we are calm, we can find solutions. We can be more creative and compassionate.

Pick a quiet spot, set a timer (5 or 10 minutes to start), then focus on each inhale and exhale. Observe the thoughts that come up, but stay focused on the breathing. Note each thought (e.g., “I am thinking about my job”) and then let it go. Come back to your breathing.

It’s like a power nap, except you’re awake in the here and now.

Want more? Here are a billion acts of green to get you inspired. What ways will you practice helping the Earth today?

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