If you’ve read our blog for some time, you know that we talk a lot about wastefulness. There are a lot of wasteful things in human life, most of which come from our human behavior. Now that 2020 is coming to an end, it’s time to examine what waste we need to leave behind and not make again for the year ahead.
Sonia Ricotti once said, “Accept what is. Let go what was. Have faith in what will be.” At one point in our lives, we experienced some fair share of baggage which we want to leave behind before we embark on a new journey ahead of us. We want so badly to move forward without worrying regarding certain things that would slow us down. Hence, New Year Resolutions always become the talk of the town once another year is rapidly coming to its final conclusion.
A New Year’s Resolution is a promise someone makes to change habits in the next year. It can be done verbally and mentally but other people write it down on their planner or even in the memo pads on their cellular phones. These serve as instant compensation for what we lost during the previous year.
But New Year’s resolutions seem to focus much on goal-setting rather than examining what we need to change. In fact, we humans tend to focus too much on listing down the things we want to accomplish in the future without realizing that there are factors, we should consider, which slow our progress. Everyone wants to speed up the process and change gradually but the wasteful things from the past are still unsettled.
The need to change and achieve progress requires letting go of several things that keep us from moving forward despite the pain that it will cause us. Besides, it was never an easy task to complete, but it is still part of the process. With that said, here are some wasteful things we can all leave behind in 2020 before we embark on our journey in 2021.
Wasteful Things To Leave Behind in 2020
Yes, you read it just fine. The invisible agent which destroyed most of the human race. This is an intangible foe which attacks slowly and discreetly into the system of an individual. I bet everyone agrees with me that we MUST leave COVID-19 virus behind 2020!!
Who would want to live in a community where an invisible enemy is on the loose aiming to wash out almost an entire community? It is like letting a murderer roam freely. Gosh, the horror!!
Kidding aside, no one would want to walk around the streets as anxiety seeping in through their system because the virus is still alive and kicking. As we can all observe, this virus ruined so many chances in the entire world. With its first few months and the beginning of lockdowns, the entire economy is slowly diminishing.
The economic crisis unleashed by the outbreak of COVID-19 is hurting economies, regardless of income level. Bringing this “token” in 2021 would just slowly delay down everyone’s progress.
Moreover, it is not solely about the sickness it can cause towards the people. Hence, it is also about the fear, anxiety, worriedness, concern, and other emotional problems it instills, not only to those who are affected but even to those who are keeping themselves as safe as possible from the virus.
We all wish to start a healthy life in 2021 and COVID-19 virus should definitely be out in the list of participants that would embark 2021 with you. In God’s will, hopefully a vaccine will be provided in the entire world soon.
We live in a hyper-consumerist society. We are encouraged to buy more, show more, and consume more. From food to gadgets to the minute knickknacks, we are inundated with ads and peer pressure to spend more and get more stuff. But the truth is, we don’t need most of the stuff we have. The majority of our possessions are shit, wasteful things and not really adding value to our lives.
Aside from the plastic waste that comes from our modern items, overconsumption exacts a heavy toll on the environment. Due to the vast amount of belongings in an average home, not everything is used regularly so this also leads to waste of resources. Included in these wasted resources is wasted money – which I know, everyone has better uses for.
Above all, overconsumption has several negative effects on human health, especially on stress levels. The more stuff you have, the more time and effort you need to spend cleaning up, organizing, and more. One of the best gifts you can give to yourself is to have less stuff and buy less – for less clutter and your peace of mind.
Let’s leave behind overconsumption in 2020 so you will have less impact on the environment and live a better life.
In terms of relationships, one of the wasteful things you should cut off your life before 2021 are toxic relationships.
Without batting my eyelashes, I highly advise everyone to leave every toxic relationship that we have in 2020. Cut loose the strings and untie ourselves from these tangled relationships which keep us from growing and developing as better individuals of the future.
Even though we love them so dearly but if they are keeping us in the shadows and ruins our chance for progress, we must learn and accept how to stay away from them. It may be a toxic romantic relationship with your significant others, friendship, or even relationship in the family.
According to Mcgill, “Toxic relationships are dangerous to your health: they will literally kill you.” Toxicity is in the eyes of the beholder. It is a concept that can be defined by everyone differently. It still depends on how someone views toxic relationships and how they handle them.
Consequently, we also need to understand that we all have a different perspective, especially on how we define a situation. But that does not mean that we must keep holding on to things or even people, that keeps us from growing just because they cannot accept the fact that we can grow without them. It is a matter of acceptance after all. They say that prevention is better than cure. Hence, once we can still prevent and keep ourselves from dying in the process while putting up with all of these toxic relationships, let us master prevention.
Staying in a toxic relationship but not doing anything about it is like saying that you are hungry yet you are not doing anything to grab the food that is on your plate unless you have missing limbs. The year 2020 already brought us to grief valley dozens of times; from typhoons, wildfire, earthquakes, viruses, and many more; inevitable things, while toxic relationships are. Thus, jumping straight to the year 2021 would be easier if we leave relationships that are keeping us from being genuinely happy.
Lack of discipline
One of the key factors that we must establish to achieve success is self-discipline. It guides the way we act, behave, and treat ourselves and the world we live in.
In the era of COVID, quarantine lockdowns tested the self-discipline of the whole world. Despite the quarantine protocols of staying inside their homes as much as possible, there are still a few who unconsciously and consciously break the protocol because they wanted to feel the natural breeze of the wind on a beach or simply just spend some quality time with friends.
In hindsight, we can’t blame quarantine violators because for years we are already used to our normal setup where we go out of our houses and spend time outside either alone or with friends and colleagues. There are many cases of cabin fever, anxiety, and depression because we are not made for staying inside all the time.
But the need to stay in to keep away from giving the virus brand new hosts is quite hard to achieve by most. Moreover, self-discipline is commonly observed when we are dead caught in a situation that would either make or break us. Say for example accomplishing our requirements and binge-watching our favorite Netflix show. This might not be a problem for some, but for others who prefer working under pressure, because they can function better, is quite difficult.
And for the long-term, let’s look at self-discipline through the lens of environmental protection. We need to discipline ourselves to live less wastefully, break free from plastic, and reduce our impact on the environment. Learning how to manage waste properly requires commitment and discipline. We need to train ourselves to throw things at their proper places, choose reusables over disposables, and many other things.
Procrastination is one of the most common habits that most of us have. Although there may be certain periods where we were able to accomplish our tasks despite all the cramming, it does not guarantee that it will work all the time. Maybe it only worked because we ate our favorite sandwich before working or maybe it worked because we were inspired after a long call with our favorite person.
Nonetheless, self-discipline is essential, especially in the real world setup. We will be faced with situations where we have to discipline ourselves to avoid ruining something. Furthermore, having self-discipline means we can balance out our emotions and contemplate better before making such actions.
Lack of discipline is one of the most wasteful things in human life. It can lead to missed opportunities and worse, environmental issues such as waste pollution.
Been there, done that. Whether we like it or not, we have certain baggage that we carry all the time. Sometimes we are aware of these but sometimes we are not. Some of these baggage helps us get through the day but there are also those that keeps us from moving forward.
A common example is moving on from a past relationship. We can never learn to forgive if we will not learn to accept that it happened. We dwell too much on the pain that our significant other left on us that we forget how to live for ourselves. We focused our love too much on someone but the minute they leave your system slowly shuts down.
The thing here is, we always claim that we want to get better, that we want to be happy yet we are still stuck with the memories of the past because we cannot accept that it happened. Because we firmly believe that the people who left us are the only ones who can complete us. It may be painful, but we have to accept that things do not work the way we want them to be.
If we wish to be better, then we have to accept that being better also means leaving the past in the past and start living for ourselves. If we wish to be happy, then we must learn how to let go of precious things that made an impact in our lives once but will surely change our lives for the better once we leave them behind and move on past it. The year 2020 tested our emotional resistance. Hence, once we embark on 2021 let us leave this baggage and live a better life.
Especially in the intersectionality of the sustainable living movement, we cannot abide by the existence of discriminatory behavior. If you practice this, you should prepare to give this up as soon as possible.
It is almost 2021 yet many are still stuck with a close mindset. For an instance, discriminating against gay people for being gay or criticizing sex like it is a fatal taboo. It is about time that we should open our doors for changes and normalize situations that need to be normalized. Let us put a stop to common stigmas which are no longer beneficial in the community.
Due to this close-mindedness, many lives are being questioned just because their life decisions does not ‘conform’ to the norms of society. Being gay is okay. Having a gay relative is okay. Being black is okay. Having a significant other that is black is okay. Stating facts towards an elder is not relative to talking back. It does not mean that your child who presented facts right in front of you is already talking back. Sometimes, as parents, it is our job to understand where they are coming from and educate them once they are going off the course.
It is a must to open our minds because life experiences influence most of our beliefs these days. Your child went through a different course than you did way back in 1999. Hence, you have to put yourself in their shoe and realize that it is not about talking back nor disrespecting the elders, because it is more than that.
Everything is okay and valid as long as it does not inflict pain towards the community and that it still promotes respect. Leave close-mindedness behind in 2020. It cannot be recycled therefore it is a waste. Trust me, you will a more peaceful life than you had before.
The worst of all wasteful things in human life are apologies that aren’t sincere.
It is definitely normal to be sorry and apologize once you commit a mistake which hurt the other party. But what we forget to realize that the word “sorry” is not just a five letter word that is a response to a mistake that someone committed.
We constantly apologize over something that we are still doing. What it means to apologize is like the code for, “I will not do it again.” You do not just apologize for the sake of doing it nor to make the other person feel better. You say you are sorry because you did not mean to hurt them. Simple as that.
Another concept of apologies, is constantly being sorry for who you are and for what you are doing. You do not need to apologize if other people cannot accept that this is who you are. You should never be sorry for being you or for loving what you love to do despite other people saying that it is not for you.
Apologies are overrated. They sometimes do not mean anything anymore. It is like constantly feeling sorry for ourselves but we are not doing something to change that. This is something which we should not carry with us in 2021.
Let us stop feeling sorry and let us stop saying sorry just for the sake of responding to a mistake you did. It is a waste that needs to be left behind in 2020. What we need to bring instead are ways on how to be better.
In a nutshell, there are countless wasteful things that we should leave in 2020. Some are even normalized and romanticized by others. Thus, if we want to live a better life and build a better community, then let us learn how to leave things that are not good for ourselves and others.
Let us make a better community by accepting that there are things that should not be a part of our lives. The key is to begin with ourselves and that is how we can achieve a more sustainable life in 2021 and beyond. We accept, we learn, and we move on.
Going zero waste is more than reducing physical waste. It’s more focused on reducing wasteful things, specific behaviors that derail the life you want to have. To go zero waste means to make sure that nothing is wasted in life – everything you do should be meaningful and beneficial.