Zero-waste on the rise, some of us become a little overwhelmed with the idea. Our message is that it’s all about creativity and shifting the mindset towards “repurposing”, eventually you’ll pick up this lifestyle quickly! In this guide you’ll find some easy zero-waste methods for your day-to-day life!
The zero-waste movement picked up steam a few decades ago, and it doesn’t seem to be stopping. In fact, more and more people are looking into this particular lifestyle. After all, it comes with lots of financial and health benefits.
Of course, millions of people who want to start living a zero-waste lifestyle can’t seem to find the courage to do so. More often than not, they worry about the size and scope of this life change. In addition, there’s a bit of a myth that zero-waste living is going to cost a lot of money. However, nothing can be further from the truth. Anyone can live zero-waste; it just takes a bit of effort and imagination.
In this article, you will learn how to start living a zero-waste lifestyle today, inexpensively and effectively.
How to Start a Zero-Waste Lifestyle
Glass Jars and Other Reusable Items
Glass jars are a zero-waste practitioner’s best friend. They are perfect food containers that you can use to store pretty much anything. Furthermore, you can easily clean them and store them, and a single jar, if used right, can last for years.
Naturally, glass jars are merely one of many reusable items you will want to start using when you start living zero-waste. Other such items include tote bags, water bottles, and utensils, to name a few. The cool thing about these products is that you don’t have to buy high-end models at once. You can always find a relatively inexpensive tote bag or water bottles online – such as some of these ethical marketplaces!
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Using Old Clothes as Dust Rags
If you have old T-shirts you can’t donate or sell, don’t throw them away immediately. Instead, try turning them into dust rags. Not only are you saving money you would otherwise spend on cleaning items, but you’re also giving your old clothes a new purpose. Naturally, you can repurpose your old clothing items in other creative ways.
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Composting Unwanted Food
People tend to have lots of leftover food that simply ends up in landfills, polluting the environment. Naturally, anyone into the zero-waste lifestyle will tell you to try composting. And while there are composting bins out there, a lot of them are pricey and not very beginner-friendly.
However, don’t let that discourage you. You can compost without a bin or simply use any Tupperware container lying around. All you really need is to learn the basics of composting, and you can begin at any point of your zero-waste journey.
Saying No to Buying New Stuff
We all like to buy new stuff; that’s a fact of life at this point. But buying something new for yourself doesn’t necessarily mean buying a brand-new product. Yes, that sounds a bit confusing, but hear us out.
Instead of going to the mall and choosing a pricey new shirt, why not instead go to a thrift store? They tend to have a wide variety of items that might just fit your want, need, and desire. Plus, they are super cheap!
Furthermore, you can always browse for free items on websites like Craigslist or eBay, or even trade with your friends and acquaintances. It’s a great way to save money and prevent old clothes from ending up in landfills.
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Reducing the Shopping List
Coming back to the point about shopping, how many times did you buy something you didn’t really need, only for it to collect dust and end up as waste? That’s a practice you will want to phase out. As a zero-waste advocate, only buy things you absolutely need. It takes a bit of patience and willpower, but it will definitely work out in your favor in the long run.
Buying in Bulk
When you buy products in bulk, you reduce the number of single-use plastic items that end up thrown away. Furthermore, you save money and don’t risk being out of stock when it comes to essential items. That being said, you should do your research. There are some items you will definitely want to buy in bulk and some that you definitely won’t.
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As you slowly drift into zero-waste living, start taking inventory of all your perishable items and waste. Keep a journal of every item you throw away, but also make sure to note everything that you regularly consume. It’s also a good idea to add the prices for each of the items you list.
After roughly a month, take a detailed look at your notes. You will know exactly how much money you end up throwing away, literally and figuratively. With this data, you can modify your spending habits and phase out anything you don’t need or consume.
Carbon emissions are a real thing, and a huge part of living in zero-waste is trying to reduce the level of pollution, no matter where it appears. So, as an advocate of a green, healthy lifestyle, you can do your part by modifying some of your transportation habits. If you can, use a bicycle or walk as much as possible.
However, if driving is inevitable, either carpool with someone or act as a driver for other carpoolers. Either way, it will reduce the amount of carbon dioxide your car would normally churn out into the atmosphere.
Networking with like-minded
One of the best ways to adjust to a zero-waste lifestyle is to have a mentor or surround yourself with like-minded people. One way to do so is to connect to zero-waste enthusiasts in your town or region.
Social media is a good place to start; look for Facebook groups or Instagram accounts that cover zero-waste topics and whose moderators live near you. In addition, if there are organizations you can join, don’t hesitate to do so.
By connecting to other zero-waste enthusiasts in your city, you can slowly build a network and spread your message to others. It can benefit your community immensely if more and more people adopt green, zero-waste practices.
However, you have to approach zero-waste advocacy carefully. Don’t, under any circumstances, look down upon people who do not live zero-waste. Always approach them calmly and use argumentation to back up your case. Also, genuine politeness is definitely the way to go.
Living Life the Zero-Waste Way: Final Thoughts
Like any other major life change, zero-waste living takes time. You will go through quite a bit of trial and error before getting everything right. But remember, you have to take things step-by-step. Even if you implement just two zero-waste lifestyle changes listed above, you will be helping the world improve.