Updated: Sep 14, 2021
If you ask any random person they will tell you that they are (at least) trying to “go green”. They might have some reusable bags that they occasionally remember to bring with them to the grocery store, or they throw some junk mail in the recycling bin at home. But if it’s not convenient, the reality is, most don’t. Tons and tons of recyclable or reusable things go into the dumps annually.
But…we don’t consider the end result.
I’m just as guilty as the next person. For example, I have forgotten my reusable bags. I kick myself for this when it happens, but I ask for a paper bag and try to put everything in as few bags as possible. I hate it when I get 5 bags for 5 items. How many of you have a bag of bags? Is it overflowing? What do you end up doing with all those bags when its finally overtaken the cabinet or closet they’re stored in?
You throw them out, don’t you?
We (collectively as humans) have ravaged our planet for more trees, more oil, more water, more resources than is sustainable. We hope that 'they' will take care of it. We are now paying the price for our gluttony of consumption. It’s happening.
Change Your Mind
I believe it’s vital to change the mindset…that it’s voluntary, that “this one thing won’t matter” so, we leave it to the tree huggers and granola girls, or worse, the politicians to make it all better. Like losing weight or revamping our diet, it takes time and effort and dedication to change our ways.
Be conscious! Be aware! Be present…with everything.
How? Don’t try to change the world in a day. First, decide to do better. Imagine if each member of your family changed one thing every month? For a family of 4, you would change 48 habits in a year! Here’s a list of starter campaigns.
· Make your own cleaning products!
· Plastic bags. Don’t get any more. Make sure your reusable bags are always handy
· Don’t buy plastic anything if you can avoid it.
· Buy reusable water bottles. No more cases and cases of bottled water
· Buy a water filter pitcher or use the one on your fridge for filtered water
· Sign up for recycling from your local trash service. Not offered? Change your service.
· Monthly family Earth Day! Pick up neighborhood trash or clean out closets, use up aging food with creative cooking, brainstorm on ways to save water, gas, food, or money. Teaching kids to be earth conscious will ingrain solid lifelong habits, even if it took us adults FOR-EV-ER to learn it.
The less we throw away, the better. Everything counts, but we can’t just recycle one box and call it good.
It is said that it takes roughly 21 days to “change a habit”. But also, if we focus on what we are gaining versus what is being lost or taken away, the new behavior will stay with us longer (hopefully permanently).
"A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step" ~Lao Tzu
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