Mindful Water Use on #WorldWaterDay

It’s World Water Day! So, what’s the big deal?

Well, access to clean water is something that many of us take for granted. Unfortunately, for so many others that simply isn’t the reality. You may be surprised to know that even in Canada, a country filled with lakes and fresh waterways, there are still communities who live with long-term boil advisories for drinking or bathing or brushing their teeth.


So, what can we do?

Well, like with any issue of this size and scope, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the daunting task of solving the problem alone. Fortunately, we can share the burden together.

5 Mindful Ways for Water Consumption

  1. Shower shorter.
  2. A reusable water bottle is your new best friend.
  3. Keep a pitcher of cold water in the fridge and ice cubes in the freezer. It will save you from running the tap to get it to the right temperature.
  4. Run your washing machine and dishwasher only when full.
  5. Share! Rather than dumping that extra gulp left in the pitcher, pour it into a pet’s dish or onto a houseplant.

Bonus: Never, ever, EVER buy bottled water. If you live in a community where clean drinking water is available, then you really shouldn’t be supporting water privatization by purchasing water from a company. It’s unsustainable, expensive, wasteful, and, in extreme cases, entirely stolen away from non-western communities.

Thirsty for more?

One of the best ways to embrace and enforce change is to stay informed. Here’s some reading to get you started.

Statistics Canada’s water study should spark federal action to protect water

36 eye-opening facts about water

Take back our water: How Trump’s appetite for privatization threatens your drinking water

How are you saving water this #WorldWaterDay?

Shower Shorter

Is there anything better than a long, hot shower? Especially this time of year? Seriously, coming in from a cold walk or after a brisk snowshoe, a hot shower can warm your bones and clean away the sweat in the most refreshing way possible.

Personally though, I find it way too easy to waste time daydreaming and singing my way through Adele’s latest hits (badly, I might add), rather than sticking to the necessities of actually getting clean and getting out in a timely manner.

Unfortunately, as we all know, water is a finite resource. Those of us who are fortunate enough to have flowing fresh water at our easy disposal should be cautious to reserve as much as possible, rather than let it flow down the drain.


1. Check out a low-flow shower head.

Unless you have super thick hair, chances are you don’t need to have extreme pressure all the time. I know some people think the water should pelt you to an almost painful degree, but if you can still rinse with a little less, then give it a try. 

2. Shut the tap when you shampoo and shave.

The water definitely does not need to stay running while you’re getting your lather on. 

3. Set a timer. 

You could use an old-fashioned kitchen timer or, if you know all the words to Paradise by the Dashboard Light, you can sing your way to an 8-minute shower.

4. Cool it down. 

Does it have to be burning hot? Not likely. If you can keep your cool and still get clean, you’ll save the energy from heating up all the water needed for your shower.

And here’s a bonus tip:

When I was an undergrad my house had an upstairs and a downstairs shower with which a couple of my roommates would have “shower races.” Someone would start the timer and whomever made it back to the living room first (clothed but usually still totally damp) would win.

What are your best tips to keep your showers short?


Low-Impact Holiday How-To

3 keys

I have a crazy goal this holiday season. I’m going to complete my gift list without setting foot in the mall. What do you think? A lofty aspiration?

It’s not that I don’t enjoy gift shopping. I actually enjoy it very much. What I hope to avoid, however, is the unnecessary accumulation of things. Of stuff. I’ve got more than enough stuff already. Most of us do. So rather than contribute to consumerism by mindlessly purchasing all the shiny, plastic, over-packaged junk that is pushed on us each year, I’m going an alternative route.

These 3 keys are not the only ways to stay mindful this season; certainly another favourite of mine is the “experiential” gift (a dinner, tickets to a show, etc.) but these suggestions are for the folks who need to have something to physically wrap, to send in the mail, or to stick under the tree.

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There are a zillion amazing and simple ideas for handmade gifts. Even if you’re not crafty, you can go big or small with most DIY ideas.

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We know my obsession with thrift stores – SO MUCH AMAZING STUFF – and I’m not the only one! True treasures can be found for the perfect person on your list.

There are other great ways to do a little recycling/upcycling too.

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OmNomNom. Who doesn’t love receiving tasty treats as gifts? Keep the packaging light or reusable and you’ve got yourself an ideal gift.


Good luck to all of us attempting the no-mall, no fuss holidays this year!