via Medium – Author: Andrea Sanders of Be Zero
I’ve found that producing less trash does more than just help the environment.
It has simplified what I buy, led to healthier eating habits, and saved me money.
Zero waste living may seem overwhelming at first, but by slowly integrating these three simple and easy ideas we can begin to make important and powerful consumer shifts — and truly make a difference!
1. “Simplify, simplify.”
Thoreau was definitely on to something when he wrote that.
Zero waste living is more than just about trash — it’s about simplifying our wants and needs.
By simplifying our lives from the inside out, we shift our attention to experiences rather than stuff. When we simplify our surroundings, we make it easier to navigate the personal areas of life without feeling overwhelmed.
I’d even argue that simplifying gives us a greater sense of satisfaction and purpose.
We need to start asking important questions about our true wants and needs in every part of our life. Then we can slowly start to peel away the excess and reevaluate what really makes us happy and healthy
What’s truly important to me? What really gives me joy? What do I really need to live the life of my dreams?
I simplified my personal possessions to only what surrounds me. By experimenting with my life like this, I’ve answered those questions.
Three things to focus on when simplifying:
→ Less is more.
→ Quality over quantity.
→ Experiences over stuff.
2. Refuse & Reuse.
The easiest thing we can do each day is to refuse single-use disposable wastes like plastic water bottles, to-go cups, plastic wrapped food, food containers, plastic straws & utensils.
Each time we refuse these one-and-done items we send out an important message about how we want to see materials produced, sold, and recaptured to be used again and again (and again and again and again).
When we bring our own reusable containers, cups, bottles, straws and utensils we save resources, build amazing consumer habits, and work towards a greener and more sustainable lifestyle!
3. Get Connected.
Nothing is more powerful than flexing our consumer muscles.
By becoming an informed consumer and taking small yet powerful actions, we can make big strides when it comes to shrinking our trash footprint.
We must vote with our dollars and take time to learn about ethical and sustainable agriculture and businesses in our communities. Learn what is recyclable, compostable, and locally sourced. The more informed we are the better! Let’s do this!