Sustainability in the workplace
We are excited to bring you this blog post because actually there’s so much more we can do during our working day to do our bit for the planet. Of course there’s the obligatory keep cup and water bottle, but we think, like us, that you might be looking for more ways to become more sustainable aside from the millennial sustainable sally cliche. Just so we’re clear - we are not condemning the use of reusable water bottles and coffee cups - they are AWESOME, and it literally make sour heart sing that so many people out there are adopting them. Today we just want to give you some more ‘think outside the box’ ideas that you can implement during your working day.
How many of you out there love a to-do list? Us too. And there’s nothing so satisfying as getting a pen and paper out and writing it all down as it helps to consolidate it in your mind. Similarly, when you’re on that important phone call at work do you find yourself needing to scribble down some notes quickly? There are so many instances during the working day that require pen and paper but we’ve come across a nifty brand of reusable note book that’s eliminating the need for endless piles of paper and throw away notebooks. Of course, probably the most sustainable form of list making or note taking is digitally - and we personally love Trello for our online list making, but for those times that you really just need to write something, there’s RUBbook.
RUBbook is a notebook with durable pages that can be written on time and time again, and a pen that erases with warm water or heat. It also comes with a free download for its mobile app which allows you to scan in your pages of lists or notes and turn them into PDFs or categorise them on the app into different sections. That way you have a permanent digital record of your notes and always a clean, fresh notebook to work with.
Ahhh lunch, the best part of the working day. If you’ve reclaimed your lunch break in true millennial fashion then firstly, good for you, and secondly are you lunching responsibly? We are well in favour of lunch boxes, the stainless steel or glass kind, packed full of a delicious plant-based meal but for those times when you had to rush out of the house in the morning or had no left overs from last night’s meal to pack up think about using your lunch hour to go and sit in a cafe with a colleague. The French are very good at this but us Brits seem to think that the only lunch is a take away lunch in a plastic box with some plastic cutlery. ‘Eating in’ is not only a great way to switch off for an hour and de-stress, but much better from a packaging point of view as well.
If that option really isn’t available to you then at least carry your reusable cutlery and napkin with you. Speaking of, we spent a happy hour last weekend cutting up old t-shirts that instead of throwing in the bin we turned into a few cleaning cloths, napkins and handkerchiefs. Keep one in your desk drawer and you’ll never need throw away tissues or napkins again.
Another very important part of the working day - coping with the 3pm slump. There are so many healthy snacks on the market these days which is fantastic, but not many that come in responsible packaging so it’s much better to bring your own.
Make your own trail mix with nuts, seeds, pieces of dark chocolate and dried fruit from a bulk food shop like The Source Bulk Foods, or Planet Organic’s bulk section.
We love this recipe for chocolate seed bars from the wonderful Madeleine Shaw. Get your baking hat on on a Sunday to make some delicious afternoon treats for the working week so that you’re not tempted to buy from a nearby cafe.
It would be surprising in this day and age if your office didn’t recycle at least paper and cardboard plus simple plastics (if it doesn’t, take charge!) However, things that are really hard to recycle like plastic ball-point pens and packaging doesn’t actually have to go in the bin - enter Terra Cycle. They will collect your hard-to-recycle items, all you need to do is go to their website and put in your postcode and what you want to recycle. So instead of throwing coffee capsule, pens, bulldog clips, paper clips, printer ink cartridges etc in the bin - take your office’s recycling into your own hands and set up a collection.