An important step towards finding happiness in life is picking a lifestyle that meets your personal needs, offers the level of comfort you desire, and provides a sense of fulfillment and well-being. For those who feel drawn to a more sustainable lifestyle, the calling is often about altruism and wanting to do more within their power to help planet Earth. With daily news about climate change, biodiversity loss, air pollution, and other environmental problems, it’s no wonder more and more people are interested in taking steps toward a solution.

There is quite a range of possibilities when it comes to adopting your own sustainability routine. You could alter your transportation and dining habits, opt to use more renewable energy, or buy clothing and textiles from more sustainable brands that contribute to the circular economy. Any combination of a change in your habits can put you one step closer to living a more sustainable lifestyle, and it is up to you which combination to choose. 

While there are many possibilities for a greener lifestyle, there are also many challenges and obstacles that people face when trying to live more sustainably. Researching the possible obstacles ahead of time and becoming familiar with solutions before you get started is a great way to ensure success. 

To help with your decision-making, we’ve outlined a few possible challenges to a more sustainable life below, along with some suggestions on how to overcome them.

The 3 Most Common Challenges of Sustainable Living

Challenge 1: Changing Habits

Change can be difficult. When you get accustomed to your way of doing things, it can be hard to let go. Building new habits requires intention and discipline.


  • Write Down Your Goals: Whether it’s on a sticky note or on your bathroom mirror, giving yourself reminders will keep your goals top of mind. If your goal is to only drive to work twice per week and ride your bike three days per week, write that down and also write down WHY (e.g., reduce carbon emissions and get into better shape). There will be days when your motivation is low, but having that daily reminder will keep you on track.
  • Give it Time: Experts say that it takes about 66 days to form a new habit. You are going to have days where you might mess up, forget your goal, or simply just revert to what you’re used to on auto-pilot. It’s important to remember that it’s okay to make mistakes. Even with a few mistakes here and there, you are still making a difference!

Challenge 2: Higher Cost

There is a common misconception that you need to be wealthy in order to live sustainably — this is not entirely true. Sustainable living is about building a lifestyle that works for you that helps you reduce your impact on the planet and live in better alignment with the natural world. That may mean living with fewer things or adopting a different style.


  • Embrace Minimalism: A minimalist lifestyle i​​s all about choosing to consume less. For example, rather than purchasing multiple colors of the same $30 reusable water bottle, just buy one $10 reusable bottle.

Challenge 3: Loss of Convenience

Another misconception about green or sustainable living is that you will have to give up the things you love. This fear comes from the consumerist economy that we live in, where companies have sold us all on the “convenience” of things, such as a single-use plastic water bottle.

This may be one of the toughest challenges when it comes to adopting more sustainable habits. A Getty Images study found that while 92% of respondents believe the way we treat our planet now will have a large impact on the future, 48% also said that even though they should care more about the environment, the convenience of products takes priority.


  • Find Balance: You don’t have to make every aspect of your life sustainable. Make a list of the conveniences that are harmful to the environment. Then, decide which you are willing to let go of and keep the ones you truly feel you cannot live without.

Get Started With a Sustainable Lifestyle Today

Whether your goal is to commit to using green transportation, saving energy at home, or switching to a renewable energy source, the hardest part is getting started. We’re here to help you on your sustainability journey by giving you access to loads of information. 

Learn more about solar energy sharing programs and check out our Resource Center to learn more about living a sustainable life.

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