So far, it seems like waste is the hardest to consciously reconsider my daily actions. With water and energy, it was pretty commonplace for me to turn off the faucet or the shower when I didn’t need the water or actually turn off my computer when I wasn’t using it instead of just putting it in sleep mode. These had always been in practice at home. My goals for waste consumption were: maximum two packaged foods/products a day, continuing to recycle (even recycle more if I could) and eating more foods that could be composted instead of throwing them away.
I really think a big change I made that helped reduce my waste was not going to Slayter for buying and eating food since all the food comes with the extra disposable plate or cup that needs to be thrown away. Instead, limiting myself to spending more time at the dining halls for food and taking fruit (and occasionally sneaking out some extra food in my tupperware containers) to snack on later. Taking fruit and other simple foods from the dining halls definitely helped me realized that I can consume food without consuming the extra packaging that is ultimately thrown away. I also got more out of my meal plan by using all of my meals at the dining halls.
Although I stopped going to Slayter, it was a hard change because I often get an afternoon snack there after my classes, so it was hard changing my routine, but it made me more conscious of what I was consuming.
I think the trash sort helped me get an even better perspective on what can actually be recycled. I use a lot of little things that I didn’t know could be recycled, like most napkins and post-it’s and the trash sort gave me a clearer understanding of what is truly trash and what is not.