Sustainable Lifestyle with Nola Gaillard

"Sustainability to me is to live a life of simplicity and contentment".


What’s the first thing you do when you wake up?

The first thing I do when I wake up is to give thanks to God for another day of life. I believe gratitude helps us to live a life of contentment. Secondly, I use the bathroom and have a drink of my sole water (made with Himalayan salts). I have a tsp every morning mixed with a glass of filtered water. Sometimes I make my bed first, and sometimes I spend time in prayer and meditation first. I also have a few moments where I spend in silence doing some diaphragmatic breathing, this helps with my chronic health issues- thereafter, I make myself a nutritious breakfast.

What’s your daily beauty routine?

My daily routine is pretty simple like me- I usually use locally sourced, all-natural products and try to support small businesses as best as I can. My current routine consists of a face wash with African black soap and tepid water. I use serum thereafter and a moisturizer. I also use a bentonite clay mask once a week- That’s it!

What do you like to have for breakfast?

I’m not a breakfast person but I do like having smoothies and chia pudding bowls. I alternate this with cooked breakfast- something like scrambled eggs or boiled eggs on toast. And when avocados are not too expensive, I love a smashed avo on toast.

How do you inform yourself throughout the day? What are you listening to, watching, reading?

It might sound peculiar but I don’t listen to the local news that much. If I do have to inform myself it’s usually via social media platforms, like, Twitter and Instagram. I also like to listen to YouTube videos and podcasts when I can. If there’s a good source documentary, I will make time to watch it.

How would you describe style during lock-down?

I live a very simple, minimalistic lifestyle, so my style has not changed at all, pre and post-lockdown. I’m a jeans, takkies and shorts kinda gal and when I do have a night on the town it’s usually something in black, grey, or white- I love neutral colors.

How do you wind down at the end of the day?

I normally end the day with a hot and cold shower ( called brown washing)My day more often than not ends with a hot cup of rooibos tea and lemon. I catch up on the last updates on social media and end off with prayer and meditation. I use my diffuser with essential oils at least twice a week before I go to bed.

Do you have any personal life hacks for getting through the day in the most sustainable way possible?

Yes, I do. My most important one is switching off the lights immediately after walking out of a room. All recyclable items are washed immediately and put into the various containers I use to store until I can drop them off at the nearest depot. If I don’t have lots of dishes to wash, I usually just add soap to a cloth and wash, instead of filling up the sink with unnecessary, excess water. When I shower, I wet my body and switch the shower off. I soap my cloth, and then my body. I switch the shower back on to rinse off. I then use my cloth to dry my body, thereby saving on using more than two towels a week. I put the towel out to dry and in the sun to kill off any hidden germs. I hang my clothes to dry in such a way that they can be easily folded and do not require ironing.

What does sustainability mean to you?

Sustainability to me is to live a life of simplicity and contentment. The less we hanker after the more the environment has time to repair and regenerate itself. The burden on our environment comes from the desire for more, bigger and better. Sustainability is living the way our forefathers lived- Less impact on the environment. I know it’s utopian thinking but it’s possible!

What drives you to live a sustainable life?

The drive behind sustainable living is to leave a better world for my two children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren if ever there are! Also just humanity in general. I believe if we live sustainably we will have fewer illnesses and diseases. We have to do more for climate and social justice, these are inter-linked.

Finally, what are three changes you would like to take from this time to move forward in a more sustainable way?

I definitely would like to live in a space where much more is done wrt to more recycling depots in our Municipalities. More education around educating people about the impact single-use plastic and litter has on our environment. To continue to advocate to small businesses about making changes in how they are packaging goods. Also sending letters to chain stores about reducing their single usage of packaging and how they dispose of waste

"The burden on our environment comes from the desire for more, bigger and better."

Words by Nola Gaillard

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