The story of the month for November 2011 comes from Lori Popkewitz Alper of Groovy Green Livin.

I had the pleasure of being acquainted with Lori and her work, through her site and active presence on social media. After learning more about her and reading what she shares, it was evident that she is a highly proactive and inspiring being, dedicated to working for the betterment of all. Lori’s passion is green, sustainable and eco-friendly living, and at this sensitive time on our planet this makes her a great role model for others.

Aside from being a writer, Lori is a speaker and consultant who is active in her community sharing her simple green living tips with individuals, families, schools and businesses. Being a parent of three, Lori also exemplifies that we can make the time for the things that matter, by aligning with our passions and priorities, at whatever rate we feel most comfortable.

In her story below, Lori summarizes the evolving journey her health and wellness have taken thus far.

Area(s) of My Health and Wellness that Needed Change

I was practicing law for many years and one day I woke up and found I was immersed in an unhealthy, fast paced, stressful life. I wasn’t taking the time to take care of myself. I wasn’t taking the time to focus on healthy foods and I wasn’t listening to my body. It became apparent that a change needed to be made.

I then became committed to living a healthy, non-toxic lifestyle. It didn’t happen overnight. I began educating myself about what was going in, and on my body. I began to make small changes and saw that the results were remarkable. After my three boys were born we discovered that two of them had life-threatening food allergies. My commitment to making my home a healthy, non-toxic space was strengthened.

Strategies I Implemented & Their Results

I started by focusing on the food I was eating and the personal care products I was using on my body. I began making small changes. The strategy I used most often was to replace things on an as-needed basis. When my shampoo ran out and needed to be replaced I would spend time researching products in order to find the least toxic option. When the ketchup was empty I would spend time at the supermarket reading labels and finding the healthiest replacement.

My diet has been revamped over the years. I don’t eat red meat and I consume very little dairy (ice cream could never be cut out!). Every meal is filled with vegetables and fruit that come from our CSA box. As a family we enjoy cooking together. My kids are somewhat adventurous eaters, so trying new things is always an option.

I do my best to stick to a non-toxic, green lifestyle. I also believe that everything should be done in moderation. It’s important to live and enjoy your life, so going out once in a while for an ice cream cone or eating something that doesn’t fall within the “healthy” realm is OK.

How My Changes Benefitted Me

Over the years I have seen incredible results from all the lifestyle changes I have made. I am very active and healthy. In addition, to the product changes, I have also worked hard to find techniques to manage stress. I exercise, practice yoga and make sure I’m consciously breathing. Sometimes I’m successful and sometimes I’m not. I know it’s all a work-in-progress and it’s all part of the journey.

Next Steps on My Health and Wellness Journey

I am constantly thinking about this—what’s next in my journey? I think my goal is to continue sharing the information I have gathered (and continue to gather) over the years with others.

I am passionate about showing people that going “green” doesn’t have to be overwhelming. There are simple changes that we can all make which will make a big difference on a personal level and on a global level.

Wisdom & Inspiration for Others

Always remember that every small change you make, will make a difference.

Find change that fits into your lifestyle. Keep it all in perspective—the path to health and wellness isn’t perfect and there will be a few bumps in the road.

Find a community that is supportive of your journey—it could be an online community, or off line through family, friends or support groups.

There will be times that you will fall off the wagon, but jump back on and continue implementing change.

You are not alone—we are all in this together. You are not only affecting your health and wellness, but you are also impacting the health and wellness of the planet.