Zero Waste Lifestyle: Beginner’s Guide
Hello, hello! Welcome to the official first post of my blog rebranding extravaganza! There is still a lot in the works (HUGE, FREE zero waste E-book coming at you soon) but I cannot wait any longer to share a few of my recent musings.
I’ve always been an environmental nut. But I will be the first to admit that the current environmental revolution is super overwhelming. The coral reefs are dying, wildfires are worse than ever, our food system is beyond repair, and the earth’s temperature is all out of whack! I know, I know.
I’ve definitely thought well how can I, one, single person, make an impact? How could I possibly help?
Well, we may not have the solution, but we don’t have to add to the problem.
The good news is – there is PLENTY that we can do to help!
My boyfriend and I have made a lot of positive changes this summer as far as sustainable living is concerned. For starters, we have been taking full advantage of local restaurants and farmers markets. And honestly, anywhere that fresh food is involved – so are we!
We’ve also taken steps to transition to a less wasteful life. And it just so happens that zero waste oh-so-trendy right now.
But also, oh-so-intimidating. At least that’s how I felt when I first looked into new ways to reduce my waste. My thought process went a little something like this,
“Zero waste? Like…none? How do people literally have NO trash?? What?!”
Yeah. Once the initial shock was over, I took a step back and realized that a zero waste lifestyle isn’t black and white. It’s not all or nothing. Reducing your waste can be practically effortless. And you can do little bits at a time. And do as much as you want.
Every little bit helps.
And y’all, not only am I reducing my waste but I’m also saving a bunch of money!
I rarely buy one-time use items (like paper towels) anymore. Instead, I have invested in plenty of reusable items and I never run out. So easy. So convenient.
So, let’s dive in. Here are the EASIEST ways to begin your ZERO WASTE lifestyle.
Everyone’s home should have a recycling bin. Start rinsing your recyclable jars so that they aren’t covered in gook. Unfortunately, they usually get tossed by the recycling center if they aren’t cleaned out.
Buy from second hand stores
This will save you money AND you are reusing an item that could have ended up in a landfill. I love repurposing old kitchenware and furniture. Thrift stores hold some real gems!
Replace plastic water bottles with a reusable water bottle
And bring it everywhere with you. The less plastic we use, the better. Why buy something that you can get for free from your sink?
Buy a reusable lunch bag to replace brown bags
Y’all. There are some cute lunch boxes out there. That’s all.
Buy a reusable coffee mug
This will keep your drink at the perfect temperature for hours!
Get a reusable coffee filter
If you regularly drink coffee at home in the mornings, buy a reusable filter. They are inexpensive and you’ll never run out of coffee filters again! If you have a Keurig, check out the compostable K-cups to reduce your waste.
Bring reusable bags while shopping
Again, reducing plastic is a huge part of beginning a zero waste lifestyle. Plastic grocery bags are NOT recyclable at many waste diversion plants. Plastic bags will either a. end up in the trash or b. get stashed under your sink for a time you MIGHT need them. Yup, we all do it. Speaking of…
Take your stash of plastic bags to a grocery store for recycling
Almost all grocery stores have a bag recycling area. It’s usually in the front of the store near the carts. Stores will ship off your bags for proper recycling.
Keep some zero-waste items in your car
The only problem with reusable mugs or grocery bags is that you must remember to bring them (easier said than done.) So, just keep them in your car. I keep a clean mug and one bag in my car at all times, just in case.
Replace sandwich bags with glassware
I do keep a small supply of gallon bags in my cabinet because I love them for camping (and have yet to find a replacement.) But for leftovers and lunches, glass containers are so much more convenient – and less wasteful!
There you have it, lovelies. This is where I started my zero waste lifestyle. You don’t have to implement each of these changes tomorrow – take it one day at a time. And have fun with it! Purchase a cute mug. Enjoy your time thrifting. Buy reusable bags with fun designs.
Don’t forget to subscribe to The Mindful Mile email list. That way you never miss a post and will get updates on my FREE ZERO WASTE E-BOOK that will be launching shortly.
If you’re looking to further your green lifestyle, check out how to stay eco-friendly while traveling.