5 Challenges while adopting a zero-waste lifestyle and how to overcome them

If you are reading this, there’s a good possibility that you are considering switching to a zero-waste lifestyle and while you are excited to finally make a difference to the ongoing environmental crisis, you might be a tad bit scared of all the challenges that might come your way while pursuing this green lifestyle. 

For that reason, we have sought out 5 challenges that you are bound to face while following this zero waste lifestyle and what can you do to overcome them:

  • Getting overwhelmed before starting: The biggest challenge is making the first step. We are constantly reading a lot of news and reports about the sorry state of our planet and while it’s important to stay updated on news, it can often be overwhelming. When a situation seems as irreversibly bad as our current climate situation, it can generate a feeling of not doing enough or whatever efforts you are currently taking might not be enough. 
  • In such a situation, remember that change however small is valuable. Small steps like carrying your own containers for grocery shopping, composting your own food waste and choosing to not indulge in fast fashion can make a huge difference cumulatively. So get started and don’t think too much!

  • Convenience and Accessibility: One of the biggest challenges is finding zero waste alternatives near you. Due to the lack of awareness about the zero waste movement, it can often be hard to find stores and businesses online which sell sustainable alternatives.
  • However, you can always consult friends and family who also lead a sustainable lifestyle for places they make their purchases from. You can also DIY many products like household cleaners and ask your grocery shop if you can buy groceries without plastic packaging. 

  • Cost: Due to less accessibility of zero waste stores, the sustainable alternatives often can be marked up with a higher price. There is a perception that making sustainable choices implies buying a lot of new things. 
  • You don’t need to start purchasing a lot of things to lead a zero-waste lifestyle, just be mindful of your daily actions- reduce the plastic waste, choose to eat less carbon-intensive foods, and avoid any product made from non-sustainable ingredients.

  • The lack of instant gratification: While we are making these changes, a feeling of we aren’t making a big difference can also crop up. Since we live in a world of instant gratification, we expect to immediately see the result of our changes. With the great extent of the environmental crisis we are currently facing, seeing instant change isn’t possible. 
  • The way to overcome this is to believe in yourself! You can make a difference and every little bit helps. Assuring yourself that you are doing this for the greater good and you’ll observe changes eventually is the way to go about this challenge. 

  • Breaking old habits: Giving up old habits and transitioning to an eco-friendly lifestyle can be more challenging than you thought. Start slow. Don’t give up all the old habits at once. Create a checklist of habits you want to imbibe and check out bad habits you are not indulging in anymore. This way you’ll be able to keep track and not get overwhelmed. 
  • At the end of the day, a transition to a completely different lifestyle can be a hard one. Take each day as it comes, continue reading and learning more about the lifestyle and you’ll be fine!

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