I have a confession to make – sometimes I feel like a hypocrite. The other day, in order to break-up the heat and give ourselves a little treat, we went to Arnie’s. Now let me preface by saying my family loves Arnie’s; we’ve been going there for years and believe in supporting small businesses. However this time, due to Covid-19, we did things a little differently. Rather than going inside or eating on outside benches (we’re not ready to do outdoor dining), we sat in our car, let it idle and ran the air conditioner because it was super hot. We all ate our ice cream with disposable spoons (we had forgotten our own spoons and aren’t comfortable with cones) and I was wearing a new dress (because I needed some clothes and can’t resist a good deal). Did I feel guilty? Yes. Did I feel like a hypocrite? Yes. I thought, “here I am with this new website and I’m breaking the rules. What is the point?” But guess what? No one is doing zero-waste perfectly and that’s ok. You don’t have to do it perfectly either.
After our ice cream, we went home and I took out my compost. I threw in an express load of laundry (washed in cold water), folded my cloth napkins/rags and wiped down my kitchen with castile soap. Then I sat down in my living room (which is full of mostly used furniture) and read my book that was purchased second-hand. While reading, I thought of this post and started working on my refurbished laptop.
So what is the point? I think you get it – just because you spend one hour breaking the “rules,” it doesn’t mean you can’t do better the next day. One day you might forget to exercise, eat your greens or reuse your containers, but that doesn’t mean you have to abandon your environmental efforts altogether. About one year ago, I heard someone say “progress; not perfection” and I loved it. Our Earth would be in a much better place if we all did a little something everyday/started some new habits, rather than having a handful of people do it exactly by the book. So don’t abandon ship the next time you do something a little less than ideal; pick yourself up and keep going. The Earth will thank you! – Rachel