I was never one to proclaim that we need to “save the planet”. I’ve heard of Polar Bears dying and glaciers melting and even turtles being affected by plastic straws…but I also never felt like my actions were causing the problem. I didn’t feel the urgency to start a compost in my backyard or quit using ziplocks.
I was taught growing up to respect and appreciate nature…you know the normal things like not littering, recycling when you can, and understanding the importance of conservation. However, it wasn’t until about a year ago that all this environmental stuff really hit me hard.
So what changed?! The crazy thing is that what sparked me actually caring about my impact was when I experienced living alone for the very first time. It didn’t take long for me to notice how much trash I was putting outside for collection every. single. night.
Bag after bag, day after day. Some days I would put out multiple bags of trash…for ONE person. It became absurd to me that I could produce this much waste. It made me start to worry about where everything I threw away was magically disappearing to.
Now typical me was alarmed at what was happening and I of course jumped to the most dramatic response. I immediately began looking up how to go zero-waste on Pinterest. I was amazed at how some people live so simply and was inspired to start making some small changes of my own.
I am definitely not zero-waste (nor do I think I’ll ever go that far), but I have made some small changes that have made a noticeable impact on the amount of trash I produce. I found that many of the small changes I made, were typically things that I had been doing out of sheer laziness.
Some of my small changes: I now avoid using aluminum foil and cook directly on a baking sheet, I stopped purchasing plastic straws, I use reusable containers to store leftovers/pack lunches instead of ziplocks, I pay attention to recycling symbols and recycle everything I can (I was shocked at how much is actually recyclable), I try not to buy without a purpose when I go to the grocery store so I won’t be throwing away expired food, and I pay more attention to the packaging when I purchase products.
Along with these small changes I have also started researching brands that create products that are both affordable and more environmentally friendly. I do not believe that I am going to “save the planet”, but I did realize my excessive “trash problem” was easily reduced (by at least 50%) just by being aware and making a few painless changes.
I hope to share more of my favorite brands I have been researching as well as any DIY household products I try out in the Lifestyle section of this blog. I may not be able to make a world of difference, but hey, if everyone made a few small changes imagine the difference we could make together.