Have you heard of the "gender green gap"?
It may sound stereotypical, but women typically live a significantly more eco-friendly lifestyle than men.
Let's close the gap with some tips to get the people in your life on board!
And the reason men are less eco-friendly than women? Well, it will make you facepalm... being green just ain’t manly enough for them!
Case in point, a friend of mine did an experiment recently. She asked her hubby to go to the market for her and she gave him reusable bags to take with him. When he came home, he said he felt a bit self-conscious carrying all the bags in the shop.
So how can we get our partners, friends, or family on the same page? Forcing the idea of living more eco-friendly on someone is almost sure to backfire. Here are a few tips to get your hubby (and your kids) on board the eco-train:
(In photo: Insulated Lunch Bag)
Start the conversation.
Everything starts with a conversation and having the first one is key! Tell them why it's important to you and why you think it will help if they gave it a try. Encourage questions and let your man and your family add in their ideas to clean up the earth. We would suggest to keep these conversations short and sweet, not full-blown lectures. More so with your kids! Education is power, but lectures can be a drag.
Make it easy for him (and your family).
Living a more eco-friendly life doesn’t have to be a solo mission. Don’t force your family to follow half-heartedly behind you.
Sit down together and set some common goals. Work out the key areas you want to cut back on your waste and encourage them to make one small shift in their habits to start. Going eco is not just about carrying tote bags.
You can also appeal to your man’s sensitive side and explain that when you two collaborate on projects, it makes you feel closer to him and strengthens your relationship. We all lead busy lives but supporting each other really helps.
Who doesn’t like a challenge? Try doing a 30-day plastic-free challenge with him and see who comes out on top.
You can also take him for a walk on the beach and see who can pick up the most plastic waste (but hopefully there isn't any!) while talking about how it harms the ocean. Sneaky beach clean-up tactics. There’s no reason why the whole process can’t be fun!
Team up or slowly get him involved.
If he doesn’t yet, ask him to go with you to the Farmer’s Market on the weekend and help with the week’s shopping. Or on your next date, refuse the plastic straw and pull out two reusable straws - one for each of you. And at the end of the night, whip out your really cool reusable food containers for the leftovers! These are perfect opportunities to show him how it’s done.
To make it a little more fun and personal, plan a plastic-free movie night with your man (or gather the whole family)! Get him involved in the shopping, planning and the preparation. Talk about how important it is to reduce food waste and you can even try to sneak in a documentary instead of a movie.
Be an example of the change you want to make.
There’s no way your partner will ever be open to a more eco-friendly lifestyle if you shove it in their face. Take a step back, live your best plastic-free life, and make your partner inspired by (or insanely jealous of) all the fun you’re having.
One cute idea would be to show him how to pack a lunch completely plastic-free before either of you step out for the day. Do up his and hers lunchboxes to add a little love and affection into the process. Don’t worry, they’ll come around!
(In photo: Our new Tradie Box)
Don’t expect perfection and stay positive.
Sometimes the commitment to a sustainable future may seem daunting. There is so much to do and we can feel so small and ineffective. This journey is going to take years of practice, and you know how hard it can be. Making mistakes is part of being human and instead of being hard on yourself, or on each other, see each mistake as an opportunity for growth. Remind them of the ‘why’ and encourage them to keep going. Like we always say, you're not alone in this.
Tell us, are the men in your life onboard with your eco-lifestyle? Who else needs a little nudge?
*Even though this blog is designed and marketed around the male gender, this advice is suitable for all human beings; regardless of race, gender and sexual orientation We aim to break down the barriers to sustainability and make it comfortable for everyone to participate 🌈