It's a Journey!
The passion to live a less wasteful life didn’t hit me overnight and I did not go cold turkey-zero waste. To be honest, I’m really glad I didn’t! The small steps along the way have allowed me to grow, to learn, and to adapt. I wince thinking about all the plastic cups I wasted when I was twenty and working at a local smoothie bar. But during that same time, I was learning about animal agriculture waste and was becoming vegetarian. It has all been a process and it still is.
Full disclosure—I’m not zero waste and, spoiler alert, no one is. That bulk food has packaging, too. You just don’t see it. So I’ve tried to stop comparing myself to others and when I feel down about how far I still have to go, I try to look back at how far I’ve come. Every bit counts. Taking into consideration my vegetarian diet, trying to eliminate plastic packaging, limiting inflammatory foods like gluten and dairy for health reasons, my boyfriend’s preferences along with my own, and a tight budget…I’d stand in the grocery store sometimes totally frozen in confliction. It can be hard! So don’t beat yourself up when plastic ends up in your cart. You’re trying!
For me, it’s been helpful to think of this process as a journey. There are ups and downs, wins and setbacks. I couldn’t afford a “zero waste essentials kit” when I started. So I’ve been slowly building it and the latest addition was tossing out our gross kitchen sponge for a wooden dish brush. I absolutely love it! This was a huge win and a big step towards a less wasteful kitchen. I was so excited!! It really is the little things. Remember them :)