Living a zero-waste lifestyle can feel intimidating, but we're here to help! Here are some easy tips to get you started on reducing waste.
The average American throws out about 1,200 pounds of organic garbage.
Everywhere we go in the US, we can see bits of litter lining the streets. People aren't recycling and are using far too much plastic in their daily routines. Look at plastic shopping bags!
Because things like crowded landfills and global warming are becoming a harsher reality for many, plenty of households are working to become more eco-friendly. Creating a waste-free life is intimidating, but there are plenty of small steps you can take today.
Below is a guide on reducing waste. Make sure to read and follow the guide to work towards a greener tomorrow.
Create a Vision Board
We know it seems silly to put together a vision board, but defining your vision helps you understand why you want to create a greener tomorrow. It helps you set your intentions of low-waste living.
Do you want to lower waste to help the forests around you, or are you a lover of the ocean? Are you hoping for a cleaner future for your children, or are you trying to honor yourself by creating a cleaner space now?
Collect pictures of things that excite you, like clear ocean water, large forests, and eco-friendly soft bedsheets. All of these little things help us understand the bigger picture.
Start With the Small Things
Take some time to identify small problem areas within your home. Point out areas where you're producing a lot of waste and areas where you could be more intentional about the materials you use.
For example, you may be using way too many plastic storage bags for lunches. Invest in reusable food and sandwich containers. All you have to do is use them, wash them, and use them again.
For more eco-friendly friendly fun at lunch, invest in a cute lunchbox. There are tons of fashionable reusable lunch bags online.
You can also start using reusable containers for sugar, flour, spices, and even bathroom materials such as bath salts. Reusable containers and a label maker will be your new best friends.
If you need fun containers for your home, hop over to a thrift store. Mix and match antique containers. They'll need a good wash before use.
Look at Who You Buy From
As you plan your grocery lists, look at who what companies you buy from. Are the products you're buying ethically sourced? Are there workers paid adequately and ethically?
Going to local farmer's markets is a fun way to support local farmers and buy more ethically sourced groceries. You can also bring your own bag and boxes to fill instead of using plastic bags from a grocery store.
If you're a coffee-lover, save money and the planet by making your own coffee at home with your own ceramic mugs. Places, such as Starbucks, use tons of plastic.
Some people dread cutting coffee shops out of their life. Talk to the employees about buying a reusable cup that the shop can refill when running by in the mornings.
Evaluate Your Daily Habits
It's scary to zoom in on our own daily lives, especially if we're doing it to identify problems. Many of us aren't as eco-friendly as we'd like to think we are.
A great place to start is by looking at how you commute. Think about how often you drive your car. Come up with ways to carpool with other members of your household.
You can work together by creating scheduled bulk shopping trips or figuring out how to carpool to work or the gym together. For a fun household activity, invest in bikes. Start biking to local restaurants or convenience stores to run errands.
You'll also want to step back and see how much water and electricity you use in your home every day. Brainstorm ways you can use more natural light. This might mean moving your desk over by the living room window.
If you tend to take long showers, challenge yourself by setting time limits. This will also help you save more money.
Create Household Goals
Once you've taken the time to identify areas that need improving, take time as a household to write down goals for reducing waste at home. You can even create a fun game out of it to bump up the household competition.
Small baby steps are the best way to start because making too many big changes at once can quickly cause burnout in your household. Start with things like finding more sustainable products for your kitchen and buying an extra bin for recycling.
As you start to get the hang of it, come up with more ways to give back to Mother Earth. Develop a carpool routine and set a schedule of prime daylight hours in your house in which no one uses unnatural light.
In order to make a difference, everyone will have to work together.
Keep an Open Mind
When making any positive change in your life, you must keep an open mind. Keep an open mind to critique and new information.
Spend some time reading about global warming and research how people in charge are reacting to it. Seek out local volunteer groups that are giving back to the earth. Read books that educate you on the importance of different ecosystems.
By constantly collecting knowledge, you're better equipping yourself to make all of the necessary lifestyle changes needed to live a greener life.
A New Year, A Greener Year: Reducing Waste
Reducing waste in your home is not as scary and complicated as it seems. We can all start with baby steps in our household to work towards a better tomorrow.
Start by understanding why it's important to reduce waste, and brainstorm ways to reduce waste in your own home. Invest in more reusable containers and support ethically sourced groceries. Spend more time together by creating a carpool schedule.
We know we caught your eye by mentioning fashionable reusable lunch bags. Check out the rest of our site to purchase one. While you're here, plant a tree with us.