This week, I’ve been saving my trash to reflect on how much waste I actually produce. I used to think that I was aware of my ecological footprint, but this week really opened my eyes on how small things can add up over time. First off, I use daily solution contacts because I can’t wear glasses due to eye health issues. This already creates a ton of waste as I’m using these small plastic containers on a day to day basis. Additionally, while I do try my best to cook at home, I still take out food from across the street a lot because of how busy I am. This could be addressed by simply making more time during the weekends to cook food – I typically cook breakfast, lunch and dinner are up in the air. In addition, I’m fond of beer – I’ll have a couple to hang out with my roommates during the weekend. Finally Amazon packages – as I’m still receiving packages in the mail for some of my needs (I don’t like to drive), these boxes come and go a lot. This really made me realize that even though I try to commute by walking and make sure that compost goes into compost and recycling goes into recycling, I still contribute a lot to some of our worlds bigger problems.
While it was inconvenient to have all my trash just sit in my room for a week (the smell was horrible), it really opened my eyes in terms of what can I change in my life in order to minimize my ecological footprint. First off, I definitely can cook more of my own foods rather than eat take out all the time. This would allow me to stop using those containers that the foods come in, and also start eating healthier. I’ll continue composting and recycling, but also be more mindful whenever I choose to buy things and live a more minimal life (do I really need that new shiny thing on Amazon?). The last thing that I noticed was my lack of action regarding electronic waste. I have lots of devices that I’ve accumulated over the years, and rather than properly dispose or recycle them, I’ll choose to keep them around. This is something I will look into more of.