The new year tends to be a time for lots of different kinds of reflection. Perhaps we could prompt ourselves to make little changes to reduce trash this year.

So, maybe we could double task this year and do some reflection that could serve a purpose for ourselves and the planet.

Sometimes, the best place to start on big problems is with the little things. Particularly, in noticing the little things.

Most of us carry a lot of stuff with us, but even if we pared down our belongings, we are still probably carrying around more stuff than we really have to.

If all the big stuff in our lives was pared down, we would probably still be left with too many odd pens, single socks, extra spatulas, odd charging chords, and maybe a pair or two of holey underwear. Basically, all the things that make it to the bottoms of our junk drawers or back of our shelves.

So, what if we got rid of all that too? Could we have even less stuff in our lives?

Dave Hakkens is an incredible thought leader and inventor who looks at the world with a remarkable perspective.

Take a look at this video of his and you will see what I mean…

Via: davehakkens 1

So, what do you think?

What kind of little things in your life could you stop consuming that might be a little better for the environment? Could you make little changes to reduce trash on a daily basis? Honestly, I should probably stop taking the free pens with me when I leave the bank, I don’t need anymore and the plastic they are made of will eventually end up in a landfill.

What about the things that I’m just a little too lazy or uninformed to properly compost or recycle? Wouldn’t a quick Google search tell me whether or not I could recycle that container? How many little places with equally as little fixes could we change our behavior with major positive outcomes for ourselves and the environment over time?

Here’s another idea from Dave on a place we are yet again needlessly consuming…

Make little changes…

But Liesl, you argue, I can’t tell manufacturers to make my toothbrushes shorter, or change the way they manufacture cables!

Ah, but you can, when standing in front of the endless toothbrushes, choose the one that uses the least amount of plastic. Don’t worry, I double checked this statement with Dr. Lynda, who is a dentist, she says it doesn’t matter how fancy your toothbrush looks. In her words “It’s just that you use it.” Though she did say Oral-B brushes are the best, because they have rounded bristles. But no, it doesn’t matter if you use the truck themed smaller brush for children or the cushy one with the more ergonomic handle, they both do the same thing. So get the one that uses the least amount of plastic, or better yet, get a bamboo or compostable toothbrush!

As for the cables, make sure you recycle them! That really goes for all of our e-waste. Or, maybe choose companies that use more universal chords.

It really is about the little things, the little choices we make that matter. As consumers, we have the power to choose products that are better for the environment.

Maybe if we make one resolution in the New Year, it’s to notice the little things. Let’s recognize the small places we can consistently make little changes that alter our behavior patterns for the better. We may find ourselves pleasantly surprised by how decluttered our junk drawer looks at the end of the year, how much less trash we are hauling every week, and hopefully how happy we are!

Stay beautiful & keep laughing!


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  1. “Story Hopper – Small Change, Big Difference.” YouTube. Hakopdetak, 06 Oct. 2015. Web. 12 Dec. 2016.<>.
  2. “Cables #storyhopper.” YouTube. Davehakkens, 12 Jan. 2016. Web. 12 Dec. 2016. <>.

Liesl Ulrich-Verderber

CEO of Ever Widening Circles, Founder of EWCed

Since 2015, Liesl has been a writer, editor, and is now the CEO at Ever Widening Circles. She is a life-long camera-toting traveler, a global story seeker, and an aspiring—but more often root-tripping—outdoor enthusiast. She can be found on Instagram @Liesl.UV