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So I definitely feel like I’m on a journey to vitality and I know that I picked the environmental domain and single-use-plastic reduction. What I’m realizing is that there are SO MANY opportunities. to reduce the use of single-use plastic. And that there are so many other ways to move towards zero waste with consciousness. It comes back to reduce, reuse, recycle — which I learned more than 20 years ago. And more than that, as we at work are challenged with monthly domain challenges (last month’s was spiritual and gratitude postings; this month is financial — with affirmations), I’m seeing so much overlap between the domains of vitality and the ripples of what I do for one domain, impacting others. Even the ones that I tend to ignore (or try to ignore) like physical vitality and weight loss.
Since most businesses, including restaurants and especially chain restaurants — are not environmentally conscious and most use a lot of plastic without thinking about it (shocked at how much plastic there is at Whole Foods), and since I want to save money and control what I eat — I’m thinking that my February challenge to myself will be NO RESTAURANTS. Thinking an exception may be if I have to travel, but I don’t see a lot of travel on my schedule this month. Some habits that have changed since the start of this journey:
1. Bought a lot of alternatives to plastic bags to use in my home and shopping (mesh bags for produce, silicone savers).
2. Carry a cloth bag in my purse and one in my laptop bag in case I have to stop for something.
3. Religiously use my Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods reusable grocery bags for shopping.
4. Use a water bottle religiously and also a coffee to go cup (at Starbucks, etc.) — carry it with me.
5. Recycling much more at home — including more things in the recycle bin.
6. Conscious of how often I take out the trash and how much I throw out in general –try to dispose of smelly stuff down the chute in my building on my floor frequently so that I can keep my big plastic garbage bag for two weeks.
7. When there’s a choice between glass and plastic for containers, I choose glass (e.g., sparkling water, taco sauce) — and before, I would choose plastic because it is much lighter).
8. Saving and sharing articles on single-use plastic on social media
GOING FORWARD / Frontiers for February:
1. Encourage my. grown children to stop buying water in plastic bottles and stop using plastic forks.
2. Follow the progress with Loop and containers for products like toothpaste and shampoo.
3. Pay attention to take-out — perhaps bring alternatives from home — and avoid eating out (No Restaurant February).
4. Try to get Whole Foods to package my sliced deli meat not in plastic bags and also other meats.
5. Talk to Be Strong Families FOHR team about how to avoid buying plastic water bottles, etc. for events.

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