Everybody talks about going zero waste. How to go zero waste. What to do, what not to do, what to buy. It’s a lot and it can be overwhelming when you’re coming in brand new. And quite frankly, most of the information isn’t realistic unless you’ve got unlimited time and money.
I’ve tried to make this guide as realistic as possible for the average person who just wants to make a difference by reducing their waste and overall footprint.
How to realistically go zero waste:
First things first, there’s an important question you need to ask yourself: why do you want to go zero waste? Reducing your waste, footprint, impact, etc, isn’t easy and it’s important to hold on tightly to why you’re doing this.
For me, I started my zero waste journey with thrifting. I had always thrifted out of necessity growing up with not a lot of money. But I started to learn about the impact the clothing industry has on our planet and I was shocked and honestly, mad at myself for contributing to textile waste. I knew I had to do better and so I did. And I hold on to that whenever it gets hard or I want to frivolously spend money on clothes I don’t need.
Maybe it’s wildlife protection.
Maybe it’s a plastic-free ocean.
Maybe it’s a stable climate for future generations.
Find out why you want to care for this planet and hold onto that.
There are a lot of things we do that cause waste. Step one is to simply use up everything you have. Yes, even if it’s single-use, even if it’s plastic. If it’s destined for the landfill you might as well use it up rather than throwing out something that hasn’t been used.
More accurately, step one-and-a-half. As you’re using up these items, take note of which ones you can replace with a more sustainable option. Like when you’re plastic toothbrush is ready to be replaced, opt for a bamboo toothbrush next.
While you’re taking notes, I want you to become hyper-aware of everything you throw in your trash can. Is it single-use ziplock bags? Is it cotton swabs? Maybe it’s food Foo waste is a HUGE contributor to climate change. Whatever it is, make a mental note of it and vow to find creative solutions to limit the number of these things you’re throwing away.
You will make trash and you will throw things away. There is no way t be a perfect zero waster and don’t believe anyone who tells you differently. But we can still reduce the amount of waste we create.
Commit to reducing your food waste. Like I mentioned above, it’s a huge contributor to climate change and has such an impact on our environment. I have a whole guide to reducing food waste that you can read here. It’s one of the most impactful things you can do.
Keep learning. Keep going. Keep messing up and keep trying. Zero waste is a journey, a lifelong journey in fact. At no point will you reach a destination where you don’t have to make a n effort. Sure, the longer you pursue this lifestyle, the easier it will become. Making sustainable choices will become second nature to you.
Learning how to realistically go zero waste isn’t as complicated as a to of people would have you believe. In fact, most things aren’t. There’s no secret or magic answer, it’s simply being informed and doing the best we can.
Please don’t forget to share this post and leave a comment below letting me know what you’re doing to realistically go zero waste!