What is Zero Waste lifestyle
Rather than calling this amazing lifestyle “zero waste”, I prefer calling it a journey of reducing as much waste as I can under given circumstances.
Zero waste term might be discouraging or overwhelming for some because as we know in our society “zero waste” is really not possible.
But “reducing waste” sounds completely different and most of us can do a part in reducing the waste we produce on daily basis.
Saying that "zero waste" is widely recognised term that is why is used the most.
Do you agree with me?
Just look into your rubbish bin and see what you throw away the most. See if you have an option to buy this item in more sustainable packaging or you might find it packaging free or you even might consider not buying it any more because you suddenly see it as an unnecessary item. Everything depends on your given situation. So please never be hard on yourself.
Remember, every action, every step counts.
Embarking on “reducing waste” or “zero waste” journey if you will, doesn’t mean that you immediately need to go and buy a new stuff from more sustainable material.
USE WHAT YOU HAVE AREADY AT HOME.
Good example would be – if you already own plastic food storage containers at home, keep using them happily. There is no need to buy the fancy looking stainless steel containers.
Buying new stuff and throwing away still good items only because it is made of plastic would completely miss the whole point of “zero waste” lifestyle.
USE and REUSE is the mantra here.
If your item is coming to an end of its working life then look for the item made from more sustainable material like stainless steel, wood, glass and so on.
Replace e.g. you’re shampoo or shower gels only when you start running out, look first for replacement of the products in your area and support local bossiness if you can. If you don’t have such an option, see online shopping.
Reducing waste is an amazing journey of constantly learning something new.
Learning something new is so exciting because we grow as people with knowledge.
Please never get stressed out about this lifestyle and see what you can do. Educate yourself and slowly incorporate changes into your life.
To reduce your waste as much as possible please get familiar with the actions below:
Refuse anything what you don’t need e.g. leaflets, marketing materials given on the street and to your mailing box, straws in the restaurants and so on. Remember there is a big difference between wanting something and needing something.
Reduce the amount of waste you produce with actions like cooking from scratch, carrying your own reusable cup, reusable water bottle, shopping bag, produce bags, cutlery, straws and so on.
Keep using and reusing what you already have at home.
Before buying a new item because the old one e.g. broke down see if you can repair it.
See if you can borrow what you need from your family or friends.
Swap e.g clothes. You might be lucky and in your area “swapping” already exists. If not, wouldn’t you start it by yourself?
Get creative and try to make what you need. It is very rewarding when we make something by ourselves and also you will learn new skills which is life changing.
Compost your food scrap if you have such a possibility.
Learn about recycling in your area and recycle correctly.
Is the last option/action – we want to avoid as much as we can to send our rubbish to landfill.
These actions will help you successfully reduce your waste and help our beautiful planet.
Always remember, we are the one who can change the world by our decisions we take every day.
Make a step today to reduce waste.
Please read the thoughts of people from our community
for the question "Which term do you prefer? Zero waste or reducing waste"
I prefer "reducing waste" and more generaly "low waste" in a full sustainable perspective. Zero waste isn't something that can be achieved in our modern society, it is more something to tend to, that motivates you to always improve your ecological approach. Or else, it'll feel frustrating and you'll end getting discouraged, thinking that you're never doing enough. EVERY SMALL STEP MATTERS.
We use the terms "zero waste" and "low waste" interchangeably, but "low waste" is a much more realistic and inclusive term. The "zero" in zero waste is really just an ideal. Unless you live outside od mainstream culture it will be difficult if not impossible to achieve. So it is important to focus on what individual changes you can do based on your particular circumstences. The more privileges you have (time, money, education, location, community) the easiest it will be to make choices that create less waste.
I completely agree with your post and prefer "reducing waste". Zero waste is more convenient since it is established, however many people who are new to any sort of sustainable initiatives get put off by the term zero waste because they imagine a glass jar full of their total annual rubbish and find a "zero waste" lifestyle out of reach. While waste reducing suggests "progress" and it is encouraging to someone at the beginning of their journey. I also like the term "circular economy"
I personally call my journey a "low waste journey" as I feel the word zero can become a very difficult goal. Living zero waste or having all your waste fit in a trash jar can be quite unrealistic for a lot of people (myself included)
I use both terms "zero waste" and "low waste". I see "zero waste" as the name of the movement, not necessarily the end goal. Producing zero waste isn't a realistic goal for most people. So I am a part of the zero waste movement and community and I do my best to live a low waste lifestyle.
Reducing waste is realistic I believe. Everyone can contribute depends of their lifestyle, countries (Vietnam is starting slowly) and believes. With my husband we are doing few changes at the time but for good. It is an ongoing progress.
I feel like this journey is never ending, just when I feel like I have reduced my waste, I am reminded that there is so much more to do. We can't be zero waste, it is imposible. All we can do is do the BEST we can do. Obviously not everyone can buy bulk or afford to buy fancy low waste items and so just based on this fact alone, a zero waste lifestyle is unattainable. Becoming educated and doing your best is the most responsible action you take.
Even though I use the term zero waste often, I almost always have to explain that it is impossible to be 100% zero waste. It is more for me to let me be aware when I purchase things or food to make the best decisions. I really like the term "low impact". I am always trying to be more responsible on the overall impact on my daily life and our beautiful planet earth.
I feel zero sets a goal that however difficult to achieve it encourages me to aim higher...it works for me
I do what I can, with the info I have and that is why I also call it a journey. I can't worry about what I cannot do. I focus on the solutions only. I don't mind either term.
I think low waste/reducing waste is better than zero waste.
Zero waste is too intimidating for most people as it is truly unattainable. Go less waste.
I believe in sort of aiming for zerowaste but it can't be achieved overnight because you are changing your whole lifestyle so I want to gradually reduce my waste or become less wasteful.
If I had named my instagram site with the term zerowaste, I would have to change it! In the 4 years I have been trying to go zerowaste, I see that it is quite an utopian ideal. For example, I do plastic free July every year, and try to put our family of four's total waste into a mason jar. The other summer, a fishing rod broke. I could have sent it to a thrift store and did some wishcycling, knowing quite well that it would not be sold for parts. Places like Value Village only sell 20% of all donations. I threw it out instead of leaving it up to someone else.
I prefer the term "low waste". I think we should not seek perfection, but rather measure our successes and actions against doing nothing. All our small actions do add up to bring big differences. When multiplied by millions, these actions can change the world.
Well for me it is definitely "low waste", but much more so I love using the term "sustainable living". "Low waste" is of course fantastic!! But somehow pointing into one direction, which is usually the question of what brings an item with it and what does it leave behind?
Whilst "sustainability" to me stands for fulfilling a circle - before consumption even happens you think twice about the actual resources and what stays behind when they're being used. And in the end you try to give some of it back to nature in a way.
Much more even I think sustainability literally starts in our minds. Acting and thinking go hand in hand with feeling and being. We have to also start treating ourselves in a more sustainable way on the inside, take more care of us and live consciously, slow down..., we are a recourse, which we depend on, too. Consciousness is key. Noone running a busy, money stacking, super stressed, always on the run life would even think of slower ways and the footprints left behind. We have to clean our inner selves first, get into balance, let nature into our minds the way it's actually meant to be, before beginning to clean up our consumption and rubbish bins.
It's all a circle and that's the wonderful part of it. Sustainability is helping Mother Earth as well as our own souls.