A Lasting Resolution: Making a Change Without Changing your Habits

It’s difficult to make our habits more sustainable once we get back into the grind, no matter how strong the New Year’s resolution. So why not build some climate action into the things you already do?

Tegan Marianchuk, for Beam Project

Photo by Ophélie Authier on Unsplash

New Year, Old Issue

‘Tis the season for resolutions and turning over new leaves. The dawn of a new year inspires a collective, annual ability to embrace new habits — at least for a time — but there’s an old problem still at hand whose age only exacerbates its urgency and knows nothing of clean slates or fresh starts: climate change. It’s not news that our environment is in trouble. All we ever hear about it is that it’s getting worse and though it’s our responsibility, there’s nothing we can do about it on a big enough scale to matter. Well, here’s some news: that last part’s wrong and we can harness the novelty and optimism that imbues the new year to start investing in a more promising future for our planet.

The Tug-of-War Between Inconvenience and Insignificant Impact

We’ve seen the data and read the reports. We know the environment is hurting, which sectors and what modern day conveniences are hurting it, and many of us even know why, but most of us don’t know how to truly help. When we hear about fossil fuel companies, industrial agriculture, unsustainable city infrastructure, or our morally unchecked mega-corporations and bureaucracy — formidable opponents much, much bigger than us — marching the Earth as we know it to its untimely demise, it may seem impossible for any single individual to make a difference. While some will gratefully become warriors of sustainability and embrace greener lifestyles this new year, we all know, change is hard and convenience is well…convenient. And because you know that despite your best efforts, you’ll forget that reusable straw and those reusable grocery bags at home, meatless Mondays won’t make it past March, you’ll treat yourself to that trendy ‘fit that’ll likely be in a landfill this time next year, you won’t bother trying to decipher that mysterious recycling symbol, and as hard as you try to embrace that minimalist, zero-waste lifestyle it’ll never really embrace you back. Author of Atomic Habits, James Clear, asserts that bad habits are sticky because they have the advantage of being incredibly convenient. Change is inevitably inconvenient, but a good solution doesn’t always have to be. Arguably, a good solution is one that leverages adversities like the issue of convenience.

New Year, Same Me: Finding a Balance

So, it’s time to ring in the new decade with a new approach to fighting for the environment. The difference you can make without making any changes at all could outweigh any of those new year’s resolutions you’ll undoubtedly find difficult to remain resolute about. Sustainable innovation and green technology is the smarter place to focus your new year resolve because the impact is truly vast whereas, treating the issue of climate like a restrictive New Year’s diet where we put our best efforts forth to reduce our carbon footprints is not enough and not lasting. The only thing that can level the playing field against increasingly rising sea levels and our ever-growing greenhouse gas emissions is technology that converts our fossil fueled conveniences into green alternatives, pulls CO2 right out of the air, and enables us to tilt the supply and demand towards eco-friendly products that bolster a sustainable economy and environment. Forget reduce, reuse, recycle: the only mantra we need for a better year and more promising future for us and our planet is remove, restore, redevelop. We’ll do this by empowering creative, eco-conscious startups with big ideas in cleantech and you can make it happen from the comfort and convenience of your Amazon shopping cart — here’s how.

Be A Major Instrument For Change

Startups are essential for redirecting the market towards sustainability, but are extremely disadvantaged in the funding department. Here’s where you and I come into the picture with the help of BEAM. BEAM is a nonprofit organization that’s made it easy for anyone to spend on the order of cents at a time to creative ventures that prioritize sustainability and changing the market’s status quo. BEAM makes it easy to invest your spare change in high impact cleantech startups by providing an easily downloadable browser extension that allows you to round up each of your Amazon purchases to the nearest dollar or donate an amount of your choice to serve as a grant to financially support sustainable innovation. This is how we’ll change the world for the better, no lifestyle changes required (though that never hurts)!

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recognizes Beam Project as a Section 501(c)(3) public charity. Our Federal Tax ID Number is 83–4367580. Contributions to Beam Project are eligible for tax deduction in the U.S.A.

We’re a non-profit that lets you fight climate change by supporting clean energy startups. Download our tool and donate your spare change: www.beamproject.co