if i tell my daughter to pick up a mess she did not make, i am met with complaints and refusal. "i didn't make this mess!"
the next several generations on our earth are going to have to clean up our environmental mess. we need to do better for them.
why isn't this sense of responsibility innate within us?
we have to look at ourselves and what causes these behaviors. what character traits do you have that need to change to cause change?
we as as humans try to distance ourselves from discomfort.
do you remember when it was uncomfortable or inconvenient to take your reusable shopping bags into a grocery store? the sense of oh, i might have to wait for someone to tare my bags if i use the self-checkout. or the sense of what if i'm scoffed at?
now reusable bags are the norm! that all happened because of people like us who started using our own bags.
never feel like your voice isn't being heard. it is.
not just with the power of your spending habits, but with your personal habits.
use this as a motivator for responsibility.
do something, rather than just thinking about something.
do you take your own reusable grocery bags but then end up grabbing plastic bag after plastic bag to keep your produce together? or to keep packaged raw meat from touching other things in your cart? or even for bakery goods? look into reusable mesh produce bags. i always get a compliment on them and people inevitably want them as well. this is how change happens. seeing others doing something so normal causes other people to not think it's uncomfortable or weird. use a cloth bag for bread. for meat, just designate a couple of canvas bags for them, bypassing the need for plastic. pop those icky bags in the washer if a leak happens or they smell funky. no big deal!
if you use the bulk bins, go to customer service and they will tare your mason jar for you. sharpie the bin number on your jar. there is no transferring of food from plastic bag to jar when you get home, and no hole in your granola bag. and you'll know what the product is and can go right back for more! i can almost guarantee you will not be the only person to ask for a mason jar tare.
if you find you are met with resistance, instead of making someone feel inadequate, judged or dumb, approach the newness with patience and compassion. you don't want to make anyone feel bad or shame them. chances are if someone has made you feel this way, you put up a wall. don't put up walls around good things (see what i did there)
make it about you, not them. say you are not using plastic as a personal challenge. it will make this a positive discussion! it will make other lifestyle switches less scary or overwhelming, for both you and the next person.
you can make better choices for our generation and the next several. we have to.