<a href="http://www.greenlifestylemag.com.au/blogs/julie#">Green challenges</a>

Green challenges

Thinking global and acting local, Julie Grundy takes on any challenge we throw at her.

How to use the behavioural change toolkit

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If you’ve read the current issue of G magazine you would have seen the article on ‘The Green Brain’, all about the psychology of building new habits. It’s a great article full of useful tips.

As I was reading it I realised that our G Challenges are a good way of applying the behaviour change toolkit. Each issue of the magazine gives us a new aspect of sustainable living we can work on with a challenge to change our habits.

When I take part in a challenge, I break out of my automatic decisions and consciously choose to make new ones. I learn more about the situation by reading about it in the magazine, and think carefully about how I can achieve a better result for myself and the environment.

I learn how to set up my circumstances to make it easier to do the right thing. The best part is that once I’ve made a change for the challenge, it’s easier to keep going after the month is over.

When I was doing the ‘no bottled water’ challenge, I bought myself a pretty and reuseable water bottle to keep on my desk at work. After the challenge, I could have gone back to buying plastic bottles of water, but it was much easier to use the one I’d chosen. I’d changed my surroundings to support the good habit. I haven’t bought bottled water in over two years now, but it’s not a change I would have made as successfully without doing the G Challenge.

Making a public commitment to the challenge helps me too! By writing about it here, it keeps me thinking about my decisions. You can do the same in the comments on my posts - I love hearing from people who are trying out the techniques from the magazine or my blog. Or you can tell your friends and family about it on your own blog or on Facebook or Twitter. Anywhere you can record how you’re going and see your progress over time is a good thing. If it’s a place where other people can support your efforts, that’s even better.

I reckon people who read G magazine are caring and compassionate people who want to do the right thing by the environment. Changing our behaviour takes a bit of work, but by doing the G Challenges we’re more likely to succeed.