It is that time of year again.
The blessed period where great resolutions are formed.
In recent years, a new favorite has joined the ranks of the ever-popular “quit smoking” and “lose weight” crowd of good intentions.
Whether it is for health or other reasons, going vegan on New Year’s Day is a growing trend.
The phenomenon even has a name: Veganuary.
Since its launch in 2014, Veganuary has garnered the interest of thousands of people all over the world. The concept is simple; participants pledge to avoid all animal products for the whole month of January.
If you have been thinking about it for quite some time but wonder if you can actually do it, here are some tips that will help you feel confident enough to take the plunge and finally try this vegan thing for a full month.
1. Choose your strategy: Eating Out or Home Cooked Meals?
If you typically eat out every day, it may not be the best idea to decide suddenly to become a renowned vegan chef. On the other hand, if you feel confident in the kitchen, your best bet for success might be trying all those delicious vegan recipes on your Pinterest board.
Whatever your case, you can absolutely survive as a vegan. However, you have to decide what your plan is for the month. Be wise and consider what is most realistic for your daily life.
I personally like eating out regularly. I use apps like Happy Cow to find vegan restaurants near me and I learned the art of “make it vegan” requests in regular establishments. You would be surprised how many of your favorite places actually have vegan options. Sometimes all you have to do is ask.
If you appreciate spending time in the kitchen, there is a plethora of recipes to be found on the net. Hint: most of your favorite dishes can be veganized. A trip to your local bookstore’s recipe book section will prove that to you.
2. Be Social
It is a lot easier to stick to something when you have people to hold you accountable. Also, let’s face it; it’s not fun to be the only vegan around.
However, that’s no reason to stop being social.
Join your local vegan Facebook page or vegan Meet Up groups in your area. If no such thing exists in your part of the world, create one!
Even though they may be hard to find in the wild, there is no shortage of vegan people on the internet.
Vegan bloggers, Youtubers and Instagrammers abound. Reach out to the vegan community, we promise we don’t bite. Anything other than vegetables that is.
3. Educate Yourself
During this month, you will likely face many questions from other people. You may even have interrogations yourself.
While you don’t have to become a walking encyclopedia or watch all the documentaries ever made on veganism this month, it’s important to know why you are doing this and a thing or two about nutrition wouldn’t hurt either.
Giving yourself the time to watch at least one documentary or read one book will go a long way in helping you stick to Veganuary.
4. Forget Perfection
Screw-ups will happen. The important thing is not dwelling on them. If you eat animal products by accident or neglectfulness, remind yourself of the reason you decided to take part in the challenge in the first place.
Making a change is hard; don’t make it harder by focusing on your slip-ups. Veganism is not about perfection. It is a lifestyle of striving to eliminate animal products as much as is practically possible.
I hope that these tips helped put some of your anxieties to rest. Remember to take it day by day and you should be fine.
It may even end up being that one resolution you actually keep. Who knows?
You can sign up for Veganuary here.