Have you ever thought about lowering your environmental impact and the amount of waste you produce, but didn’t know where to start? Maybe you google searched sustainable living or “how to lower your waste”, then… BOOM. There it is everywhere: ZERO WASTE.
The thought about zero waste is goal-worthy. Like, yes! I would love to go zero waste someday. BUT, it’s also extremely overwhelming at first glance. All over, you see “zero-waste tips” “zero-waste kitchen” “products for a zero-waste bathroom” and if I’m being real here… When I was first starting out trying to live more eco-friendly, I think that all the zero waste stuff made me freeze up like a deer in headlights. I saw a video of a girl who went zero waste to the extreme- all the trash she produced in a whole year fit into a tiny jar. First, I wanna day: that is amazing. Anyone who lowers their waste to that level is an absolute eco-warrior, out there doing the most to reduce their environmental impact, and I applaud them.
For me though, I saw that and thought “well, if I know I can’t go zero-waste like her, what good is me trying to barely reduce my waste amount? I’ll just wait until I can do something like that.” For years, I sat on the sidelines of sustainable living, wishing I could reduce my impact, but feeling powerless, overwhelmed, and discouraged. What I didn’t know then, is that I had everything I needed to start living a more sustainable life. I didn’t realize how much small changes could add up, and so I didn’t even look into ways that I could reduce my household waste.
If you’ve been stuck in that same mindset, I’m here to tell you: you can make a difference without being perfectly zero-waste. Below, I’ve embedded my podcast episode that lays out ways that you can lower your household waste, without having to buy a bunch of sustainable alternatives, or make these massive lifestyle shifts overnight. Click to give it a listen! (Or, you can keep reading below for a cliffnotes version of the list.)
SIMPLE WAYS YOU CAN LOWER YOUR WASTE
- Start refusing single-use plastic (such as plastic bags at the store, or plastic straws at restaurants)
- SHOP LESS. Plan grocery trips, meal plan, and get mindful about your shopping habits.
- Buy loose fruits and veggies instead of pre-packaged ones
- Use a reusable water bottle
- Use reusable straws (and don’t forget to bring one with you when you go out and about!)
- Shop your local farmers markets
- Buy food in cardboard or glass rather than plastic containers
- Make a compost bin
- Recycle, and if you already do: read up on local rules and make sure you’re recycling properly to avoid “wish-cycling”
And there you have it! 9 simple ways that you can lower your household waste!
If this helped you, please share with a friend who cares for the environment! And make sure to listen to the podcast episode to hear more in-depth reasoning behind each item on this list.