Today, driving home from one of the outreach events, I came to the realization that this internship has almost acted as an intervention towards my poor sustainability habits. Thinking back to how I used to be, the amount of ignorance I had towards the way I was living was pretty horrific. Even going to the grocery store I came to the realization of the things I used to be unaware of; simple changes I was able to make with little to no effort.
One of the things I noticed I did without thinking was making sure I brought canvas bags with me to the store when I went to pick up some chips. I have been finding myself actually grossed out with the amount of plastic consumed and I am trying to do everything in my power to reduce my own plastic use and it’s impact on the environment. Now when I go shopping, I approach the situation with the attitude that I won’t be leaving the store with plastic bags- period. Typically, purchasing reusable bags isn’t that expensive if I do happen to forget them. I see purchasing more of them as a positive thing, because the more of them I have, the less likely I am to forget bringing them into the store.
I really enjoy this new lifestyle of being environmentally conscious a lot. In fact, when I bring my bags to the counter or ask the cashier to remove the plastic disposable ones, I often get compliments and often will even start a conversation about how they’re more durable, spacious, and less tacky looking than the bags we’re all used to getting. I hope that my, and all of our, choices to be more sustainable will inspire others to make the same changes in their life to help save them time and save the environment.
And this rant sort of relates to my last blog, the one about how environmental consciousness shouldn’t be pushed on people by shaming them or making them feel helpless about the repercussions of not making any of these changes. I think people should promote this lifestyle through positive means. Just smiling as your bring your bags up to the cashier might make them think twice about choosing plastic next time.