The latest eBook on my eReader (iPhone) that I’ve been enjoying has been that by new Aussie author Lisa Heinze, a fashionista sista turned eco-warrior.
Called Sustainability with Style (or read ‘n tweet using #sustwithstyle on Twitter), it’s one Sydneysider’s account of her journey to a more sustainable self, from stylish, bang-on-trend advertising type to empassioned environment blogger and author – complete with mini-life crisis along the way.
Here’s the cover:
In this book, I enjoyed exploring the concept of ‘freeriding’ into new environmentally-conscious habits, probably because it makes it easier for me to be comfortable with our current choices, the way I rationalise thoughts and actions around sustainable living and how to use this to transition to different, greener habits. It’s one of the reasons I’m excited to be giving away a copy of the book, but more on that below.
On the other hand, Lisa takes it all on with gusto and has a sometimes uncomfortable journey as she battles with self-perception (who am I without the latest fashions); wonders about what their stuff (or lack thereof) says about her; and challenges friends when they don’t wholeheartedly join in on aspects of her journey, early on. It’s a brave person who puts all this out there and doesn’t try to sugarcoat the experience.
Throughout the read I see Lisa as an uber-stylish lass and it’s safe to say she’s an overachiever in every aspect of her life. So when she turns her mind to sustainability and ways to live that can help save the planet, she gives it all the enthusiasm of a shopping addict let loose on the Champs d’Elysses with a black Amex.
Unfortunately, not everyone’s a much of an early adopter as Lisa when it comes to the environment, and a strong part of the read is that she uses her academic mind to analyse and gain meaning from her ups and downs through the application of Cultural Studies theory.
I loved the honesty of the author in Sustainability with Style as much as I enjoyed the unabashed exploration into greenieland as Lisa tries out recycling and reusing everything from takeaway containers to furniture found on the street and using the internet to research the ‘no poo’ movement!
This eBook (of course it’s an eBook) was easy to read and I enjoyed it on the train most days – almost missing my stop once, I was that ensconced – while getting me to think more deeply about my choices around consumption, being more aware of cause and effect, and hopefully navigating the way to a greener me (and when I say me, I mean in our family).
Small things we now practice, such as using energy more conservatively, using reusable coffee KeepCups, reducing foot wastage, improving recycling habits, looking at packaging for natural ingredients, reducing the travel miles of food, choosing to breathe life into pre-loved furniture, enjoying learning to grow vegies and herbs — all these things are manageable changes that will help me pave the way for new, greener habits once they are under the belt.
Here’s my bright-as-a-button Keepcup:
Sure there are setbacks, and I recently found myself in the aisles of Ikea, blowing $200 on god-knows-what before I even blinked. Still, this is a journey, a process, a story, and all we need to find our own way.
I am very much hoping that Lisa will continue to document her journey as she travels to India with her husband on new adventures, sharing hints and tips that she picks up, and even into when they may have a family of little ones in the future and all the new challenges to sustainable life that it may pose.
Win a copy
To win an e-copy of Sustainability with Style, simply post a comment below, or on my Facebook page, with your top tip for sustainable living. It will be judged by Lisa Heinze herself!
Oh, and you can read my interview with Lisa from a previous blog post here.