We’ve all been there. You set epic goals for the new year, then lose track of your vision after a few weeks. You commit to working out more, only to break your stride when life starts to get more complicated.
There is no person on this earth who hasn’t faced hiccups like this.
This summer, I’ve been struggling to stay on track with my zero waste goals. What started as a “just this once” situation on quickly morphed into wasteful habits that have been hard to re-break.
Vacations have disrupted our careful, zero waste patterns, and lack of planning has started to make that conventional grocery store down the street look a lot more appealing that it used to.
Why am I telling you this? Because going zero waste is challenging! It’s very difficult to go against the grain and pursue a lifestyle that is totally countercultural. Insecurities begin to creep in…Is this really making a difference? Is it silly to think I can actually cut plastics out of my life?
Insecurities like these work hard to derail you. But don’t give up! There will always be instances when following your normal routine will be a challenge. You don’t need superhuman willpower, just a few strategies to help you get back on track. I’ll be following them too!
7 Ways to Bounce Back After a Zero Waste Slip Up
1. Make zero waste living as convenient as possible.
It’s pretty hard to turn down a coffee, even after you’ve realized you left your reusable cup behind. Give yourself every opportunity to succeed by keeping zero waste items like this in your car. Other examples include grocery totes for shopping, a container for leftovers, and a reusable cutlery kit!
2. Get reenergized with a little research.
Few activities will get me more excited about sustainable living than soaking up the wonderful advice from my zero waste community. Spend some time on zero waste blogs, or search the hashtags #zerowaste on Instagram for some added inspiration!
3. Start small.
As I’m sure you’re well aware, I’m a huge fan of taking baby steps! I highly recommend signing up to participate in my 30-Day Zero Waste Baby Steps Challenge. It’s simple, it’s straightforward, and it’ll help you dip your toes into the zero waste lifestyle without needing to take on a total overhaul.
Join us! Start your 30-Day Zero Waste Baby Steps Challenge today.
4. Schedule new habits into your life.
Break out that calendar and give yourself a time and place for every major zero waste activity: grocery shopping, recycling, etc. Doing this will help make zero waste activities second nature.
5. Accept that it’s okay to compromise sometimes.
Even the most successful zero wasters are familiar with compromise. Need to settle for a wrapped granola bar in a pinch? That’s fine. Just don’t eat one every day! Don’t have time to make it to the bulk store before dinner? Grab a box of pasta at the grocery. Just recycle it when you’re finished.
Read more: Find Local Grocery Resources and Use Them
6. Get an accountability partner.
Whether it’s spin class or a Skype date, having someone there waiting for you – expecting something of you – makes all the difference. You show up! Grab your best friend and invite them to take on the challenge with you. They’ll keep you accountable and encourage you when you’re struggling.
7. Ask for help.
There is no shame in being a beginner or asking lots of questions as you’re getting back on track. That’s why I’m here! Need a sounding board along your zero waste journey? Join our 30-Day Zero Waste Baby Steps Challenge support group on Facebook and ask away.
Where are you really struggling in you zero waste journey? Are you ready to get back in the saddle? Let me know in the comments below – I’m here!
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