EIGHT TIPS FOR ENVIRONMENTAL STEWARDSHIP & HEALTHY LIVING

Everyone deserves access to clean air, water and food. Worries over pollution, endangered species and climate change can feel overwhelming. However, there are a lot of small changes that can make a positive impact on our lives and Mother Earth. Here are eight ways to nurture nature and each other.

RECYCLE
Park City’s Recycle Utah curbside pick-up, educational programs and robust local operation make recycling a no-brainer. Other companies like Jeff Jewett’s “Spring Back Mattress” diverts mattresses and box springs from landfills, manually deconstructing and recycling 90% of the components.

EAT LOCAL
While Utah’s climate poses challenges for gardeners, supporting Utah’s micro-growers like Copper Moose Farms, seasonal farmers’ markets, and Summit Community Gardens creates a vigorous, and very delicious farm-to-table experience. Learn to “put up” summer produce for year-round goodness and healthy eating.

REPURPOSE / REUSE
Yard sales are great for cleaning out your garage or finding lost treasures—they also initiate interactions with new neighbors, a practice that is proven to lift moods. Give castoff items a new life and discover latent talents by creating art and sculpture from found objects.

GARDEN
Headlines about global insect declines, impending extinction of one million species worldwide and three billion fewer North American birds are bleak. “Some simple steps like planting a pollinator garden or replacing non-native with native plants are important because they will attract more native insects, which attract more native birds, and ultimately wildlife,” says Swaner EcoCenter’s Nell Larson.

GET OUTSIDE
“Nature Deficit Disorder, the effects of spending less time in nature, combined with our increasing pace and disengagement between people, has profound implications for our well-being and the health of the Earth,” says author Richard Louv. Numerous studies, including one by University of Illinois, showed that exposure to natural settings improved the ability to cope with stress and adversity.

SLOW THE PACE
Just breathe. Unplug your computer, get off your phone, take the buds out of your ears, and enjoy the practice of quiet contemplation. Research shows that meditation can control anxiety, reduce stress and stress-related conditions like PSTD and fibromyalgia. It can also lead to a more positive outlook on life.

SOCIAL INTERACTION
Relationships have an impact on overall wellness, positively affecting mental, physical and emotional health and increasing life expectancy. While COVID-19, distance and other factors can hamper social gatherings, luckily tools like Zoom meetings, telephone calls, emails and old-fashioned pen and paper keep us connected.

VOLUNTEER
Lending a hand to nonprofits like the Swaner EcoCenter, Summit Community Gardens, Recycle Utah, Mountain Trails Foundation, or any cause close to your heart not only enriches our environment, but focuses energy on areas where you can actually make a difference in your life and the lives of others.