Let’s Start our Zero Waste Lifestyle Together
Zero waste. Sounds broad. Sounds like an uphill task only a few can carry out.
Different things come to mind when we hear the term. We bet you’ve already conjured images of industrial waste languishing in landfills. Or you probably thought of the trash you have in your bin right now.
Yep, most likely, you’re already calculating how much physical trash you dump daily. And that’s actually a good place to start. After all, billions of tons of garbage (of all kinds) are dumped every year. There’s so much trash overwhelming the planet that it’s already pouring out into the oceans and other natural habitats.
The fact that you’re reading this means you are entertaining the idea of starting a zero waste lifestyle. But you’re not too sure how or where to start.
Photo by Oana Cristina on Unsplash
How to Start A Zero Waste Lifestyle
If you’re determined (or at least a tiny bit interested) in embarking on a zero or less waste lifestyle, here are some things we believe are important:
Start with Your Why
It’s no secret that in anything you do, it’s much more compelling if you are aware of your motives. Going zero waste is no different; you have to have a clear reason behind it.
You might be sick of watching turtles and other marine life die from plastic trash floating in the seas. You might have watched somewhere how single-use items need so many raw materials in manufacturing only to be thrown away in a second. Or maybe you simply want to save money so you’re thinking of reducing gas or food consumption.
Every reason is valid – you just have to be clear on what it is. And whatever your reason is, you can use that to guide your decisions and actions.
The good thing about this is, aside from helping the environment and helping your pocket, breaking away from the consumption and throwaway culture can overflow into other aspects of your life.
Dig Through Your Waste and Your Habits
No, we’re not asking you to dig through your trash like a CSI. What you want to do instead is start thinking about where you’re making a lot of waste.
Consider how much single-use type of waste you consume – those used in packaging, takeout, disposable materials, and such. Reflect on how you can reduce or reuse these materials.
Starting with reducing and reusing means that you’re able to lessen your purchases, which means fewer products are manufactured.
If you’re unable to use the 15 chopsticks the Chinese takeout gave you last time, that’s fine. Don’t go all-or-nothing.
Start with what you can change. The old you may be used to getting 3 kinds of lotion. Now you can just pick the one you like the most. Or shift towards a brand that’s sustainably made.
It’s a process: do it one step at a time.
Use Up Your Existing Items
The goal in zero waste is exactly that: zero waste. But now that you’ve reflected on your usual purchases, you’re realizing that most are made and packed in unsustainable materials.
What do you do? Throw them all out? Your post-purge trash will end up in landfills. Kind of defeats the purpose of zero waste, right?
So rather than throwing most of your old items in the trash, use them up first. If you can compost food waste, that’s great. Reuse what you can, look into where you can donate certain stuff, and if you can upcycle a piece or two then even better.
The key is to keep as much materials away from landfills as possible.
Just Do It
Borrowing from the famous sports slogan, there’s no other way to start than to just do it. You might be thinking that you won’t really make any difference unless you are able to fit your household trash in an 8oz jar.
While these zero waste ‘stars’ are awesome in how serious they are about the lifestyle, there’s no need to go extreme. We all have to start somewhere, and we bet it’s going to be more sustainable if you take the gradual route.
Let’s Start Our Zero Waste Lifestyle Together
We are by no means an authority on the subject. We’re just like you: navigating the process of how to reduce our consumption in the best and most doable way we can.
We are in it for the long run, which means we focus on small but necessary changes to our routines that will be meaningful for the planet.
We’re not experts – YET.
And because we’re still trying to figure everything out, we want this blog to be a judgment-free place. Here we’ll share what we’ve learned (and are still about to find out) about going on a zero or less waste journey.
We’ll be highlighting techniques, real-life practices, and insights from different practitioners.
No grandstanding, no competing with each other who has the smallest trash bin, and definitely no politics to muddle our path.
Of course, there will be new findings about what are really beneficial practices for the environment, and so we’ll keep track of the changes in information.
We want to know what you know and what worked for you.
So what do you say, shall we start this adventure together?