By Lynne Saywell, The Buzzword Copy
There is a waste crisis on our planet today, with plastic everywhere we look. And it is our responsibility, as individuals, to do something about it. We ought to be aware of our own impact, and find different ways to make small but significant changes to our lifestyle to reduce our waste.
I think we all know that the way we currently buy and then throw away ‘stuff’ is not sustainable.
It’s easy to blame supermarkets, Amazon etc. for all the packaging. But taking a closer look at our everyday behaviour shows that a lot of what we do is simply habit and the routines we have learnt and become ingrained over the years.
Here’s an example that everyone will recognise.
Growing up our family had bins. A big swing top in the kitchen with a drawstring bin liner. A wicker basket in the lounge and bedrooms (sometimes my mum would put a plastic bag to line them) and a pedal bin type in the bathroom.
On bin day she (or my dad, I’m not stereotyping here!) would get a big black bag (thick, good quality because the neighbours would see) and do a sweep of the house. Putting all the smaller plastic bags of ‘rubbish’ into the big black bag and out for the bin collection – no thought of the next step in the process, but back to line the now empty bins with more plastic.
So our family rubbish was several plastic bags within a big plastic bag, and this was replicated for every house in our street, every street in our town…. you get the picture.
So when I started to think about how I could reduce my waste, loftily aiming to be a zero-waste household I thought of the obvious. Recycle more, refill more, reuse more.
But my biggest revelation was this: get rid of the bins!!
Up until then, I had just reproduced the routines from my childhood, this is all I knew. But from the moment I took my big swing top kitchen bin to the car boot, things changed. I literally had nowhere to put the rubbish in my hand, so I started thinking about it so much more. I don’t need bins in my bedrooms or lounge, they just encouraged me to be lazy.
I now have a small pedal bin under the sink for those unavoidable bits that haven’t worked out what do with yet – mainly hoover dust. But now that I haven’t got the temptation of the lovely big bin I am forced into being more thoughtful.
I think about packaging when I shop, food waste when I cook and use apps like Vinted to sell on clothes. I recycle the usual plastics and paper, take my soft plastic to the supermarket, along with batteries, lightbulbs, makeup and recycle my masks at Wilko.
Using refillable subscription services for cleaning and laundry products, shampoo bars and reusable make up wipes helps reduce even recyclable waste. The more you think about the possibilities, the more action you take – it’s an ever-growing snowball of positivity!
Now I’m thinking about other habits that I don’t even realise I have!
Re-home your bin and start to make the changes you know you can – it’ll change your life and help you to be part of the sustainable solution, not the problem.
About Lynne Saywell
Lynne is an 'eco-copywriter for sustainable brands and businesses. Her goals is for her writing to have a purpose and only writes to promote environmentally friendly products/services. Companies with a big social conscience but often smaller budget.
Lynne has worked with amazing people that motivate her to make positive changes every day.
She hopes word by word to be part of the sustainable solutions.