Depending upon who you ask, the best version of yourself might wear a variety of different faces. Maybe you aspire to always be on time, be perfectly polished in your style, and run half-marathons every weekend. Or perhaps your ideal self gives generously to charities, has two-point-five children and a dog, and also has a garden in your backyard.

No matter what you think the best version of you should be, however, you always want to strive to be sustainable in what you do. What’s the point of giving to an environmental cause when you’re going to turn around and drive your gas-guzzler to and from your job? Nevertheless, being the best version of yourself doesn’t have to be some lofty endeavor. As long as you make the first steps — with sustainability in the back of your mind! — then you can get started on living your best life today.

Make Fitness a Priority

…but with a smaller carbon footprint. Many people are understandably daunted about starting a fitness regimen, but the fact is, getting into shape is fairly simple. All you need is the right sport and the motivation to enjoy it. Take, for instance, running. A simple pair of eco-friendly running shoes will get you out the door and on your way to peak fitness in no time.

Conversely, you’ll want to avoid partaking in any sport that requires an excess amount of equipment and fuel to enjoy. Sure, skydiving may seem like a rush at the time, but think of all the fuel used to get you up at 15,000 feet… and it’s not much of a workout, either. Even golf, which seems harmless, wastes a dismal 2.08 billion gallons of water per day. Avoid both at all costs.

Organize Your Home

…but do it with sustainability in mind. Who doesn’t want to come home to a clean, organized home after a long day at work? However, while doing dishes can seem like a chore, using paper or styrofoam plates are even worse when you think about their environmental impact. Instead, think green across the board.

If possible, switch out your old appliances for more energy efficient ones. Or, if you’re on a budget, think in terms of upcycling. Those empty pasta jars can make for incredible organization in your home for your odds and ends. Recyclable boxes can hold your paperwork, and why not switch out paper towels for reusable rags? Old tee-shirts can do the trick, so don’t feel like you have to rush out and buy brand new ones, either.

Eat a Balanced Diet

…but shop locally and preferably, organically. Think about all of the packaging waste in all of those highly processed foods on the supermarket shelves. Not only are they terrible for you, they’re also terrible for the environment. They don’t belong in your home or in your body, period.

Instead, try to shop the perimeter of your grocery store. Look for natural foods, such as fresh produce and whole grains and legumes. Even better, why not skip the grocery store altogether and check out your local farmers’ market? You can avoid the nasty carbon footprint of hauling those bananas across the country and try new recipes featuring local, in-season food from within your own community.

Strive for a Clean and Sober Life

…but also practice self-compassion. Unfortunately, it’s no secret that any given time, nearly 20 million people struggle in private with substance abuse. While many of these people are trying to do their very best (and sadly hide their addiction behind shame), they still aren’t quite getting where they want to be in life.

If you want to be the best version of yourself, you have to be kind to yourself and take care of yourself on both the inside and the out. Instead of putting on a fake smile and trying to make everything else in your life seem “normal,” please seek out help for your substance abuse. There are recovery centers across the country, so if you’re looking for a Texas-based rehab or one in California or even in New York, please don’t give up hope.

Are You Living Your Best Life?

The benefits of living your best life are, without a doubt, absolutely worth it. From enjoying peak fitness to savoring delicious meals that came from your neighboring farms, being both sustainable and happy can easily go hand in hand. By employing these four tips, you can find yourself making the most of your own life — and in doing so, also make the world a greener, much better place altogether.

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