Are you having trouble converting your family to low-tox products? It’s not always an easy task!
When you decide to start changing your buying habits and considering what’s in products you use, the research you do brings encouragement and inspiration. Suddenly you are on the path and you can start to take action. The more changes you make creates almost a spiral effect as you start looking at more of the products around the house and decide to replace them with new low-tox ones. You try new products you really like and are happy to convert to them. The tricky task is getting the family to follow suit!!
This photo was taken at my bathroom sink this week and represents the frustrations I have in regards to my ability to change my family’s habits.
I am sure if you are reading this you can probably relate. Or if you are just beginning to change the products you buy soon enough you will come similar hurdles. Sometimes the family just won’t budge. They are used to what they use, the feel, taste, smell or texture, and they are not so keen to jump ship!
So, as I looked at my toothpaste vs husband/kids toothpaste and my shaving cream vs hubby’s shaving gel, I pondered on why I am still looking at them in my bathroom. I wondered how others go when converting the family. I have tried a few tricks, tried lots of different products but certain products are still hanging around! I thought I would share my tactics on managing this situation….
Below are my tactics and tips for family members who won’t convert!
Don’t buy the offending products. I have found great alternatives and suggested the family try them but with a continued refusal to make the change I have just declared I won’t buy the ones they like to use. Since I am the main shopper in the house, this just means the rest of the family have to work out getting it for themselves, and dad has to argue with kids who use his since they don’t buy it!
Get clever with product placement. I happen to have bought a fair few tubes of different natural toothpastes to find the one I like the best (I have decided it’s Grants as I feel like it is the closest feel/taste to the ones we all tend to use – and hoped the family would feel the same). The different tubes are sitting in toothbrush cups and lying by the sinks in the bathrooms. A new option is right there for them to try – to no avail! Another little trick a friend suggested this week was encouraging then to do half/half test, so I am encouraging this at the moment!
Slip in a few comments as they are using it. When I happen to be around when the offending product is being used I make a few comments about it. “Look at that colour! Can can imagine what’s in it!” I say. “Did you know you can swallow too much flouride?”, “Do you know what makes that foamy?” I am armed with some knowledge now and I use it! (I am good at doing this with food too)
Lead by example. As parents we know that kids soak up what you do and may end up copying you (only the good stuff we hope!). They may not choose to do as you do instantly but you can only hope that over time they will decide to follow in mums (or dads) footsteps and give something a go. I also take this approach with food…it works sometimes!
Accept their personal choice. This tip doesn’t help my cause but it does help my wellbeing. When I get a bit frustrated with not changing some habits, I take a deep breath and accept that this is my journey that I want to take them on but they are their own person. I can’t force the point! If my kids were younger I could shape their choices easier but with a 11 and 14 year old in the house, they have their opinions, their preferences and a bit of rebellion is just part of their nature. My husband has been very accepting and the more he learns he understands where I am coming from, but he is set in his habits – and thats OK. I have had to work through 40 plus years of habits and it does take time!
So in the end education is probably the key. I see myself as the family teacher when it comes to health and wellness. I have the books, I read the websites, listen to the podcasts and try the products – then I talk about it to the family. They may jump on board for some things but not others. I just hope my teachings help them in the long run.
Once you know something you can’t un-know it.
As you learn about how toxic ingredients may effect your health and realise there are a lot of great alternatives out there you want everyone to jump on board. However, whether it’s family or friends you are trying to convert, they need to be inspired themselves to make a change, and sometimes you are not the inspiration. It will come but you can’t start judging or creating conflict to force that change.