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3 steps to embarking on the journey of creating a more sustainable working environment.

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business men fitting green puzzle pieces together

The world is going through a change. People are now becoming increasingly aware of the damage humans are having on our dear planet. We are killing it. No sugar coating the facts anymore. The more we wise up to this the faster we can help prevent some of the disasters bound to follow.

Climate change is a very real thing. Not some made up gobbledegook, conjured up by a bunch of ‘tree huggers’. And we are the first generation of human beings to acknowledge the strains we are putting on the planet.

However, this doesn’t necessarily mean the apocalypse is nigh. If more people joined the green movement, these damages can be halted and in a perfect scenario reversed. Even in business, by making small changes you can help.

Now in an ideal world, the entire human race would don their green capes and go about eliminating all plastics and carbon emissions. Start regulating the meat industry and would stop using fossil fuels. But we all know that after years of being none the wiser, this will never be the case. However, there are little changes that many people take for granted that if everyone exercised would make a huge difference to the health of our planet.

So what are these changes?

In business, no matter the size you may believe that creating sustainability is not easy. But by implementing some small rules and integrating them into the general habits of your workers. You can, as a business owner, leave greener footprints.

Let in that sunshine!

It has been 140 years since the world was introduced to the first light bulb. With civilised humans being around for roughly 6000 years. So that’s about 5,860 years civilised humans have had to manage without turning a light on. How on earth did we manage?

Now I am not going to ask you to revert back to middle ages, as we all know they weren’t the kindest of times for humans. But there is a natural light resource so many of us take for granted. The Sun.

Working outside would mean that even in the winter time you will still be reaping the benefits the sun has on the body. If you work in a building then you can also do the same. Instead of turning on the lights, open the curtains and let the glorious natural light flood your rooms.

If there is enough light to work in then you shouldn’t need to use electricity. Of course, with different seasons come different levels of natural light. But if you make a conscious effort to keep the lights off whenever you can. That can make a difference.

Natural light boosts vitamin D production and serotonin levels (those happy hormones). Serotonin is generally asscociated with mood-boosting and increased productivity. So by opening the curtains, keeping the lights off during the day and by letting in as much natural light as possible. You are not only helping the environment but you will also see happier, healthier and more focused workers in your business.

Go Paperlite

Now we understand that with any business there will be times that you will need to print off a document or two. However, a lot of people now take for granted the solutions now in place to help businesses reduce their paper waste.

With the improvement of Cloud systems, where files can be safely and securely stored online. This makes your documents accessible almost anywhere with an internet connection. You should essentially never feel the need to print a document and be physically storing them.

There are various software's that can help you manage your files and store them online. Where they can be easily back-upped and restored to most devices. And should you need another reason to go paperlite, then imagine this.

You leave your office, an asteroid then obliterates said office. All that important paperwork, poof, gone. Then your worst fears are realised as you can no longer do business. All the physical paperwork, contracts etc. are now lost, forever and you will need to spend all your time restoring that precious information.

All of this can be avoided by using Cloud storage and online file management.

Now I am very aware that an asteroid is extreme and very unlikely to happen. Fires and flooding, however, can happen in any business. So it is always best to be prepared for any crisis. So in the process of going paperlite, you are not only protecting your business. You are also helping to reduce paper waste and deforestation.

Add a little bit of green!

Now, let's talk about plants.

Plants are wonderful things and many people don’t understand how amazing they are for the environment.

One small change you can do to have a positive impact on the environment, especially within your workplace. Is to go out, buy some plants and scatter them about. Plants are scientifically proven to overall help the air that is surrounding them. They absorb CO2 and then release cleaner breathable oxygen, which we all know we need.

So by adding plants you can improve your workspace’s air and make it a lot healthier to breathe in.

Plants are also very pleasant to look at. They brighten up a room and can add colour and vibrancy. Working environments can be known for being drab and corporate. This can have a negative impact on the overall mental wellbeing of your workers or even in fact you.

Plants are known to make people feel happy, going back to those happy hormones. A touch of green can have tremendous benefits of both the environment and the productivity of your business. Happy workers are better workers.  

Final thoughts

Now, this might not seem like the environmental vigilantism that you are often seeing on the media. No one is asking that you chain yourself to a tree. But by enacting these little steps and getting everyone in the business to do their part too. Then you will be contributing to making the world that little bit more healthy.

Imagine if everyone in business started making these little changes, then it sets a good example for the rest of the world. Then just like dominoes, we can hope that everyone else will fall into these good habits. We only have one planet and there are no second chances, so why aren’t we taking this opportunity to do more?

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