Small Odd Changes by Julia Beard

Changing how you live your life is a weird part of growth and becoming more mindful of yourself. Unconsciously, we change in small ways all the time, which is all a low impact lifestyle asks of people. Make small changes and build good habits that make huge impacts for our planet and bodies. “That’s too expensive for me”, “I don’t have the resources”, and “It’s not doable for Lubbock,” are just some of the things I’ve heard when I’ve mentioned my lifestyle to others. What can one person really do? A lot actually, but where do you even start? There are so many small things you can change and still have an impact. 

            Beginning with saying no is possibly the easiest and simplest beginning change you can start with. No to anything you’re comfortable with beginning with. I started with straws, by simply refusing them when they were handed to me. However, you can start with anything such as fast food, groceries, beauty products and more. Straws are just a great example because they’re everywhere and in everyone’s life. As well as telling promoters no! There’s a way to never get junk mail again. Google this one to save the hassle!

            What do your coffee shop habits and daily java orders look like? In a to-go paper cup, gross! Bring your own reusable cup and get your order to-go the eco-friendly way. Don’t have a traveler cup or coffee cup? Rock those funky mugs in your home! This is a habit I started before my zero waste days when I was only a caffeine addict. I would make coffee at home in one of my mugs, then simply take it with me. Then later after finishing the initial cup from home, I’d get more in my mug. This hack does handle some hand-eye coordination; however, you can simply bring a mug without the coffee from home. Save the simple use cups and money by bringing what you already have at home. Besides coffee in mugs taste better anyway. 

            Simplify your life! By really evaluating what you truly use and don’t use can cut tons of unnecessary packaged products from entering your home. I am still learning this one the hard way from time to time when I declutter. I’ll find old products and items I used once then never again because I didn’t love them as much as my tried and true items. 

            Follow the traditional wedding saying, something borrowed! Borrow what you need before buying something new. You’d be surprised what some of your friends and family might have hiding away somewhere. Especially for the occasions you’ll never need this item again except for this one time! Save your money and hit up some friends. I’ve done this countless time with clothes, shoes, and books. There is a cool app called Bunz, where you can trade for anything you need. Another way to be eco-friendly if you can’t find what you’re looking for is buying second hand. Through the Bunz app and thrift shops you can find anything you need and some unique items. 

            What can you do if you aren’t down to completely switch lifestyles? Recycle and dispose of your items properly. I know being in Lubbock, Texas is a little harder to do so, however, Texas Tech and City of Lubbock have some decent recycling centers. Separate out by type of material the items are made of plastic, metal, paper, cardboard, and wood. Then take it on down to them and they’ll hand the rest. Easy easy, lemon squeezy. 

            For earth day, what are you willing to give up?

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