Ever since I was a little kid and started spewing out sentences, my mom has taught me not to have a “trash mouth”, “potty mouth”, “dirty mouth”, “sailor mouth”, “would you kiss your mother with that mouth” kind of mouth.
As children, we are taught the “essentials” like to have good manners, not talk to strangers, look both ways before crossing the street, eat all your veggies, do your homework before playing, and the list goes on and on. I don’t know about you, but strangers become some of my best friends and teachers, I live on the edge way too much to check before crossing the street (to the horror of most of my friends and surprise I am still living), and I absolutely refuse to do any assigned homework as I am a forever committed self-learner on my own terms; it’s a disease. I do however love veggies and the energy they give me, and I believe in manners as far as to be kind to everyone I meet, so some of the lessons are still applicable. My point is, we as adults have the power to pick and choose the way we live our lives. We can choose to be nice, or we can choose to be a**holes, we can choose to have a positive impact through our daily actions or not. Everything is up to us.
So what choices am I talking about exactly; because you know by now it’s not all about how to be polite. Let’s start with actual trash to round out the title of this blog. The past couple years, I have been trying to be more conscious of the trash I am creating in the world. Just because we in the United States and some other more developed countries have the privilege of having someone come to our houses and pick up our trash doesn’t mean that we should pile it on by the pounds and act like it goes to some far away land, never to have any impact on nature, other people, animals, our kids, our future kids, etc, etc. Because the truth of the matter is, trash does impact the world, and if we didn’t have this luxury service, we’d be burning our trash in the street just like some other parts of the planet where they haven’t yet been able to set up, pay for, and implement trash collection.
Now, I am not saying that we should apologize for living in a country that has been fortunate enough to establish these types of practices, or to go back in time and abolish trash pick up and have everyone take care of their own crap completely. What I propose is a happy medium. I think organized pick up of discarded items is a major plus for countries and helps keep the development ball rolling, reduces spread of diseases in this modern world, and allows us to live the kind of fast-paced lives so many of us have become accustomed and preferential to. That being said, I do realize the obvious fact that there are more and more people joining the modern world every day and with technological advances such as amazon and your modern conveniences of fast food, fast shopping, fast shipping, fast everything; there is some responsibility that needs to come into play.
I personally have made some simple adjustments such as not drinking out of plastic water bottles (unless I find myself in an area void of fresh, clean drinking water; literally this happens just a few times a year), switching from buying foods packaged in plastic to fresh foods or foods packaged in glass, composting food scraps (which is so easy and makes for happy house plants), buying things in bulk when possible- such as nuts, berries, etc., and I’ve actually stopped buying any kinds of soaps, shampoos, conditioners, toothpastes, laundry detergent or any of the like (more on this in a future post), also bringing my own water bottle and to-go containers everywhere. Now, you don’t have to go so drastic or hippie dippy but I’m just recommending next time you are at the store, loading up on the usual weeks “essentials”, take a moment to see if there is another option of the same product that will create less trash. Think about little ways you can reduce in your day to day activities. You will probably end up saving time, money, and health in the long run.
We owe it to the planet, ourselves, our families and friends, and future generations to prevent this from becoming TRASH PLANET. Come on-let’s not make ourselves the laughing stock of the rest of the solar system because we can’t get our sh**t together. Change is inevitable and landfills will someday be a thing of the past, but for now what we can do is mind our trash….and for all our mothers, mind our mouths 🙂
What Can I Do?
- switch from eating fast food and packaged food to more natural foods- your body and the planet will thank you
- avoid single-use items
- use a glass or metal re-usable straw (they even come with the most adorable little cleaner brushes)
- bring my own water bottle (hint– most fast food restaurants like McDonalds, KFC, etc. actually have purified drinking water, so even though I won’t eat their food, I thank them for allowing me to have access to clean drinking water and fill up my water bottle)
- buy things packaged in glass or card board instead of plastic and re-use the glass (see picture below)
- make my own soaps or find a bulk distributor of body care products where I can fill my own containers- these stores are popping up all around California; not sure about the rest of the states/world yet
- bring my own grocery bag- a big duh by now; or at least get paper bags
- make my own animal food from real food- I can make in bulk and freeze. dogs love chicken and rice mmmm
- buy meats from a butcher where it gets wrapped in paper; if I’m the meat eating sort
- JUST THINK