Looking Back and Moving Forward

This week has been full of challenges. Though most of the challenges were not very difficult, the adjustment process was a difficult one.

The week began by cutting down my water use. This task was one of the easiest for me. I have been on long trips where we were forced to take military showers (turning the water off while washing your hair, body, etc. and only using it to wash stuff out of your hair). I think I immensely cut my water use with ease.

Next, trying to cut down my energy was a difficult one. This was difficult because it forced me to change my habits. I am used to using my computer in bed and then simply closing it and letting it “sleep” for the night. Instead, this week I began to shut my computer completely off. The first half of the week, I had trouble remembering to do so, however one I adjusted I found that taking a little time to change your habits can mean the world of difference.

Waste was a difficult item to reduce. I found that I constantly develop waste throughout the day. I had to break my habit of meal-ex because I found that I threw away a lot when I went there. I became much more conscious about choosing snacks that didn’t have wrappers and by the end of the week I have to say, I was a little tired of bananas and unsatisfying Curtis fruit.

Transportation was the easiest because from the start I used it the least out of the items we were asked to reduce. I did have to travel in a car one, but it was a full 12 passenger van to a rugby game, so I did all I could to carpool and reduce my carbon footprint.

Food was tough since the dining all supplies all of my food. A few items are local at the dining hall, such as the milk, but it was hard to tell what else was local versus coming from far away sources. This was the goal most out of my grasp because, with being on a meal plan, I didn’t really have any say in what food I would be served or where it would come from.

Daily product usage was a little difficult. I tried to use smaller portions of shampoo and conditioner when in the shower. Additionally, I didn’t use excess hair product on my hair after showering, like I usually do. I think it is hard to avoid using products but it can help to reduce consumption because that way you buy products less frequently.

Overall, this week was very eye-opening. I learned how the little things can make the biggest difference. I think by doing a little bit at a time makes the end product more doable. In the end, I think No Impact Week will have a great effect as I move forward with my life and it has made me more aware of my actions and their consequences.

Caitlin Lutz

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