Friends Of The Earth (And You): Persuading Loved Ones To Recycle

When you have got on board with the need to recycle, become more energy efficient and live more sustainably, you can quickly become a total convert. Not only are you helping out the planet, but you’ll usually find that you’re able to live well for less money thanks to your efforts.

 

When we change our lives in a positive way, it’s a natural next step to want to share what we have discovered with our nearest and dearest. It can also be tough from your new-convert stance to see someone throwing anything into general rubbish and not bothering to separate their recycling.

 

So you make the decision to tackle this head on: you’re going to be the one to convert them to a brand new way of thinking. While that’s all well and good, there is the tricky subject of how you go about it. Go in too hard and too fast and they’ll feel like they’re being lectured; but if you’re too softly-softly about it, then they might not get the message.

 

You need a strategy. Here are a few ideas to get you started on convincing others of the benefit of recycling and sustainable living.

 

Offer To Help Them

 

The best way to offer to help is to do it in a way that just seems like you’re being a good friend. Given that few people live in highly-organised homes, the person in question might have a junk room or attic that is in need of some attention. Here is the best place to begin; offer to help them go through it. Say you have developed a keen interest in recycling, and you’d be happy to see what items they might be able to get rid of or potentially find another use for.

 

If they agree – which most will, who turns down free help on their house?! – then it becomes a learning experience. As you sift through the trash and uncover the broken appliances they forgot to get rid of, you can explain to them how they might go about dealing with these items in the future. When you have a good pile separated into trash and recyclable, you can arrange a same-day rubbish removal so that your friend can see that this process can be as efficient as just throwing things out without further thought. Hopefully, this will set them on the road to taking the mantle on for themselves.

 

Enthuse About Your Habits

 

Is the above method too direct for you? Then you might need something more subtle. Many of us pick up our ideas and habits from the people around us, especially if they talk positively about them. So it becomes your mission to endlessly enthuse about how much you’re enjoying recycling, how it makes you feel good, how it’s nowhere near as much effort as you initially expected it to be.

 

The problem with subtle is that you have to rely on them to pick it up and run with the idea. If it’s been a few weeks and you’re yet to see any evidence of this happening, then there’s nothing wrong with nudging them in the right direction. Finish your latest “I love recycling” speech with an additional: “have you ever thought about trying it?”

 

If that doesn’t get them thinking, then nothing but direct, blunt statements will! It’s your final option, but sometimes, you might just need to be straightforward and ask them to make more of an effort. Hopefully, by deploying the above tactics, it won’t come to that.

 

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