2018 was an amazing year for me. I was introduced to the zero waste lifestyle, worked at my first architectural internship, and lived abroad for four months, gaining knowledge, experiences, and a lot of friends. I realized that my main goals I set at the beginning of last year mainly had to do with my study abroad experience: save up money, travel to far away places, learn a new language. So naturally, I kind of didn’t know what to do with myself when I returned to Maryland and had nothing to do for a few weeks. I’m pretty much out of money (no regrets), and I spent a lot of time contemplating “what’s next?”
Luckily, one of my Christmas gifts was a copy of Zero Waste Home (purchased used, thanks mom 🙂 ) and it has really inspired me to make big changes in my life. She talks about how having more “stuff” is just having more things to worry about. If you make sure you only surround yourself with things you need and use on a daily basis, your life will be a lot less stressful. Which really makes a lot of sense to me after wrestling with 42 pots and pans and cookie sheets trying to cook in my parents’ kitchen. I’m sure I’ll have a similar experience when I go back to live with my roommates in Philly – why are there always so many pots and pans??? Don’t get me started on the junk drawer.
Okay, slightly off topic. Basically, my main goal for 2019 is simplicity. I went through and found homes for a lot of old clothing, stuffed animals, books, etc. that I had sitting in my room back home, collecting dust. Why hang on to something “just in case” I need 3 different options for a formal handbag if I ever get invited to a gala? What gala am I going to be going to?? Plus, I’m sure one of my friends will have something I can borrow in this entirely hypothetical scenario. Sharing is caring! Someone could be using that, and donating or selling your unwanted items helps prevent people from buying new things and bringing even more “stuff” out into the world. 2019 is the year for reducing and reusing, people – and I’m excited.
With that being said, I’d like to share a few of my New Years resolutions with you – partially so that I can hold myself accountable for them, and partially because I’m hoping it may inspire some of you to make these changes in your life as well. I’ll include some links to information if you’re interested in the research behind some of my decisions as well. 🙂
From here on out, I will:
- Say no to fast fashion. (shop small or second hand instead, it’ll last longer and you won’t be contributing to the pollution of our earth with cheap, disposable clothes)
- Cut out red meat and try to eat vegetarian on most days of the week. (I have high cholesterol, and the industry is harmful to our environment – check out this link if you’re interested in learning more about that!)
- Buy experiences, not things.
- Track my trash to analyze what I’m still buying in plastic and try to significantly reduce how much trash I’m producing.
- Do more yoga. (I’m currently doing Dedicate, which is a 30 day yoga challenge and you should check it out, she’s super cute and there’s also a dog)
- Start running. (cardio has never been my thing, but I’m determined to make it my thing because it’s so dang good for your health)
- Bike to school whenever possible. (thanks Denmark!)
- Journal and sketch something each day. (I might try bullet journaling!)
- Write one blog post per week!
I know I’m taking on a lot, but I’m really excited for what this year holds. I’m really looking forward to continuing this blog, researching ways to reduce waste and sharing my experiences with you all. I’ll be changing the title from “Life in Copenhagen” to “Waste Not, Want Not” as one chapter of my life ends and another begins. I’m so thankful for everything Denmark has taught me, and I’m excited to take those lessons into the new year.
Vi ses! ❤