Here in North America, it is now summer time! It's time to enjoy the warmth, summer activities, and best of all, nature! But even if it's not summer where you live in the world, there are always opportunities to embrace and enjoy the outdoors!
Part of a zero waste mindset is to put value back into our natural world. What do I mean by that? It means that we see our living ecosystems as a unique and vital part of our collective survival. It means we consider how and where things are made. It means consuming better. It means we have a greater understanding about our local ecosystems and how important they are to the whole planet.
So when we embrace and put value back into our resources and environment, we are collectively saying that we want a planet that is nourished and healthy. And there is no better way to get reconnected to nature than by going outside!
There are plenty of ways to keep the zero waste mindset as we enjoy nature. Try incorporating these three ideas all summer or all year long!
EXPERIENCES OVER STUFF
Simplify your experiences! It's easy to head to the mall and start shopping, but why not switch our over-consuming habits to experience-based ones? We can support our local economy by visiting a state park, wildlife refuge, and or sanctuary. Many state and local parks have annual seasonal passes for you to enjoy as well.
EMBRACE THE SEASONS
Whether it's spring, summer, fall, or winter there are so many opportunities to enjoy the outdoors. Outdoor journaling in the spring, outdoor dinners in the summer evening, fall leaf collecting, or getting bundled up for mindful and quiet walks in the winter. These are just a few examples of how to embrace the seasons all year round!
BRING YOUR OWN
Going outside doesn't have to be a trash fest. Remember to use your greatest zero waste weapon - refusing. Refuse single-use disposables like plastic water bottles and individually wrapped snacks. Instead carry your own sturdy and lasting reusable bottle. Pack your own snacks in small mason jars or stainless steel containers (you can get your own via Life Without Plastic's website). I love to take dried fruits, nuts, and seeds in my containers for healthy and tasty snacks outdoors.
Each day, make an attempt to spend up to 15 minutes (or longer!) outdoors. Get to know a part of your outdoor community. And remember to BYOB (bring your own)!