Mental health has been pushed to the forefront this year, and it’s no mystery as to why. The stress, uncertainty and isolation caused by Covid-19 has driven many to the breaking point. Fortunately, we are bidding farewell to this dark year, and ushering in a new one. One which hopefully brings with it an antidote to a seemingly endless pandemic.
But for those struggling with eco-anxiety, there is no clear solution in sight. While it has been a good year in the UK for green initiatives, there is still plenty of work to be done to slow the rate of global warming.
If you are dealing with anxiety or grief related to climate change, here are 7 ways to cope and use it to fuel your green ambitions.
1. Educate yourself
While the science can feel daunting, doing research that extends beyond the endless doom scroll on social media can actually be surprisingly uplifting. The understanding of our past and present mistakes can be essential in making real transformative change. And not all the news is doom and gloom. Focus on projects aimed at carbon sequestration like reforestation, regenerative agriculture, marine conservation, and innovations in renewable energy.
To learn more about the green energy technology that is gaining momentum and poised to revolutionise the energy industry in the UK download our Renewable Energy Guide.
2. Turn your eco-anxiety into eco-activism
If you’re feeling climate-guilt, you’re not alone. More and more people are realising that everyone has a part to play in reducing our collective carbon footprint. They may also be realising that changes will need to be made that will drastically alter some of the convenience we’ve come to expect in our lives. That responsibility can feel quite heavy, but instead of letting it overwhelm you, let it motivate you to bring about change.
This can mean different things for different people. Modest lifestyle changes could include eating less meat, producing less waste, composting, and modifying your travel plans to avoid a flight’s carbon footprint. More drastic changes could include choosing a career in sustainability, getting involved in local politics, or joining a climate activist group. Instead of feeling guilty about the negative effect each of us has on the planet, let it serve as a reminder of the potential impact each of us has in the fight to save the planet.
3. Evaluate your energy consumption
Energy production and use is currently responsible for 75% of greenhouse gas emissions in the EU. This means that by drastically changing the UK’s energy landscape, we might be able to achieve net zero emissions by 2030.
A good place to start in reducing your energy consumption is identifying areas of inefficiency. At Monarch, we help streamline this process, and provide sustainable solutions that offer financial and environmental benefits. If you are interested in boosting your green reputation as well as building financial resiliency, contact us at Monarch.
4. Find like-minded friends
“Eco-anxiety” can feel quite isolating, especially in Covid-times, but you’re far from alone. There are plenty of groups and communities focused on sustainability and building a greener future you can join online. This can be a good way of feeling involved in a movement and provides you with a healthy outlet for your stress.
In these uncertain times, it’s understandable to need more than a group of friends to cope with your emotional distress. If you feel that you need one-on-one counselling, there are various mental health organisations that you can turn to.
5. Protect and nurture your local green areas
Spending time in nature is beneficial for anyone struggling with stress or depression. It also has dual benefits for those with eco-anxiety. Working in a communal garden or volunteering for the national trust has the therapeutic benefits of spending time outside, as well as being an active way to participate in taking care of the planet. While it may seem like a drop in the ocean, if more people get involved or take interest in conservation, governments, and corporations would follow.
6. Support your local communities
Supporting your local shops, farmers, and artists have many social, economic and environmental benefits. Buying your meat and produce from your local farm shop most likely means you are supporting a smaller farm with environmentally conscious agricultural practices. It also means the food isn’t transported overseas, significantly reducing its carbon footprint. Supporting local shops and artists have similar benefits, plus your money goes towards feeding a family as opposed to building an emission-heavy corporation.
The protection and growth of our local high street is also helping to build a low emission future by reducing the need for car travel. By creating walking and biking cities we improve air quality and slash carbon emissions.
7. Make changes infrastructural
While changing your own behaviour is significant, it’s important to try to effect change on a larger scale. This can mean integrating green policies into the framework of your business. Or taking steps to change policies at a local or national level.
If you have a business, making sustainability a part of your corporate identity can affect employee morale and stakeholder confidence. This can help to ensure your future success while actively fighting climate change.
Planning for the future
It may feel difficult, even impossible, to make future plans in times like these. On the other hand, this may be the perfect time to set new goals in your life – for your household or your business.
Energy efficiency is perhaps one of the most important aspects of a more sustainable business structure, which makes your utility monitoring and management more important than ever. At Monarch, we understand the weight of that responsibility and do everything we can to help our clients build a resilient energy foundation that can support a successful and environmentally friendly future.
Interested in incorporating sustainable growth into your organisation’s identity? Check out our services to find out how becoming green can save you money, boost your reputation, and ensure your long-term success.