10 ways to live more simply

The second part of the Laudato Si’ pledge calls us to Live More Simply.

In Laudato Si’ Pope Francis invites us to, “return to that simplicity which allows us to stop and appreciate the small things, to be grateful for the opportunities which life affords us, to be spiritually detached from what we possess, and not to succumb to sadness for what we lack.” (222). As a way to live Laudato’ Si, we invite you to look for ways to use less, to share more, and to focus on relationships instead of things.

  1. Buy less stuff—Before purchasing something new, ask yourself, “Do I need this? Does this bring me joy?” Have clothes, shoes, and other items repaired rather than throwing them out.

  3. Buy more consciously—Look for goods that have less packaging. For instance, don’t buy individually wrapped cheese, or individual snack packs. Buy fewer things, but spend more to buy local, or support businesses that pay fair wages.

  5. Eat more intentionally—Go meat free. See if you can reduce your meat consumption at least one day each week, or reduce consumption of animal products. Buy local and in season fruits and vegetables, or try growing your own.

  7. Waste less—Reduce food waste, and avoid throwing away food whenever possible. Always bring your own bags when going grocery shopping.

  9. Share more—Look for ways to share with others in your community, such as a yard or house equipment library, or organizing toy or clothing swaps with the neighbors. Share your time by finding ways to volunteer or supporting community groups.

  11. Drive Less —Talk to friends about sharing a car or vehicle for grocery trips, to and from Church and other opportunities. Bike, walk, or use public transportation whenever possible.

  13. Nurture your relationships—Prioritize your time with family and friends. Find free and or inexpensive ways to spend time together like going on walks, playing games. Institute personal or family time when no one will use electronics.

  15. Take quality time for yourself—Spend a week keeping track of your and your family’s time. Identify if there are places you’re wasting your time that could instead be spent intentionally. And try to take time to be in nature every day.

  17. Examine your lifestyle for waste. Turn the air conditioning up one degree, or the heat down by one degree. Don’t buy bottled water if the tap water is safe to drink. Cut down on your “phantom energy” use-unplug items when they don’t need to be charged.

  19. Take time to pray and give thanks—Spend time every day to pray, to give thanks, and to savor the things that you do have.