January is over. All the new year’s resolutions might be gone by this time, or are here, stronger than ever before (if so, congratulations!). But you probably found this content because you are searching for something deeper than only keep a new year’s promise for a month or two. We are talking about a resolution for a lifetime. We are talking about Veganism. And yes, I know you are struggling, I was the same. But I think I have the answers that might help!
I always loved the #Veganuary campaign, even before I become vegan myself. I think they provide an incredible arsenal of information about Veganism and why to be Vegan, inspirational quotes and interesting facts. All of that with a vast community of recent Vegans, sharing their stories, connecting and keep growing together. So, it’s not only in January, it’s the entire year. It’s a new life.
But moving on to a more practical field: how do I keep Vegan when my parents disapprove it? How do I keep Vegan without missing out on social events? How do I keep Vegan in corporative environments? How is it possible to continue being Vegan without becoming the arsehole of the party? Well, unless people haven’t told me that, I don’t feel like my friends, co-workers and family feels like am I an undesirable presence because I’m Vegan. And here are my five little tricks:
- Surround yourself with a community of helpers: Veganism is going strong every day. Actors and actresses, sports champions, journalists, movie directors, singers and songwriters, influencers from all sorts of industries have been declaring adopt a plant-based lifestyle. It’s easy to find out that your favourite celebrity it’s also an inspiration on that regards. But as important as that is to have someone close to you to inspire you too. Friends, colleagues from college or work, neighbours, people that you can see frequently or follow on a social platform. People that can bring you that boost of energy when you feel weak or that can give you personal tips on specific challenges from your city or county. Facebook Groups and MeetUp communities can be a place to go when you find yourself in need to meet new vegan people close to you.
- Keep things organised: if you are willing to make things work, the organisation is your safeguard. Need to buy a new pair of shoes but doesn’t know if they use animal leather? Research first! Don’t know any vegan restaurant or restaurant with vegan options close to your workplace? Try to find info about it on Google or on a local website (here’s Irish Vegan, pals!) and save some time from your weekend to cook your own lunch for the week ahead. Are you going out with friends and not sure if the booze available in the pub is vegan-friendly? Check Barnivore!
- Always have a snack on your bag. I said ALWAYS: I know. Social events happen all the time, and you are not always prepared to not be starving to death because there’s no vegan option. Beer, chips and olives are our best friends, but things can get strange if those are not available. That’s why I can’t stress enough the importance of having some fruit, nuts or a cereal bar in your pockets or bag. It can save you, trust me!
- Make a list of trustworthy brands and products: at the beginning, reading labels is what we do best, to make sure that there’s no milk powder or weird food additives in the things that we buy. Why don’t you come up with a list of brands and products that are vegan-friendly? It helps you to remember things. There are apps like Vegan Pocket and Vegan Scanner that can help you in the task and also put you in touch with a community of helpers, adding new products to the lists. Believe me, with time, you will not need it anymore, but it’s of great help in the first months.
- Keep learning about Veganism: we all have been there. As soon as you mention that you are Vegan, there’s always that person making jokes about bacon, saying that it’s super hard or questioning your reasons behind it. Most people don’t really know anything about how their food gets to their plates, can’t connect the dots or don’t really care. For all those moments, the best you can do is to educate yourself to keep going. Watch new documentaries, read books, articles and researches about it, follow activists and make yourself informed and up to date. Try to be inspirational in your conversations about the topic and not to show anger when someone considers your life choice as a non-important thing. At the end of the day, you are the one who knows why you choose to be vegan and the reasons why you want to keep doing your part, but share a bit of knowledge doesn’t do any harm, right?
I’ve been vegan for almost two years now. It’s been a journey that I’m very proud of and a pathway I wish I had started earlier. There’s nothing I’m more grateful than looking to my plate and only see life, joy and colour. Nothing I”m gladder than or look around my room and only see products, clothing and stuff that were thoughtful bought, with care to choose stuff that doesn’t kill or harm any living creature.
I hope the list above helps you in your journey too, and if you have any question, why not to drop a comment below or send me a message? I’ll be glad to help!