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8 Amazing Reasons Everyone Should Take Recycling More Seriously

8 Amazing Reasons Everyone Should Take Recycling More Seriously

The concept of recycling is not a new one. For centuries people have reused materials to improve efficiency and achieve all sorts of amazing things. During WWII, if not for the massive recycling effort across North America that turned old bed springs into guns and planes, things might have gone very differently. But in an age when we are faced with a line of specialized recycling bins everywhere we look, it can be easy to forget how important it is to take the extra few seconds to sort out our trash. Hopefully these 8 reasons why recycling is important help motivate you to do your part!

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    1. Almost Everything Can Be Recycled

    When we really try, it is remarkable how much waste we can recycle. Everything from batteries, to food waste, to clothing, electronics, glass, metal, paper, and plastic can be recycled. According to a Canadian report as much as 80% of typical household garbage is made up of recyclable materials or organic materials that break down easily. It is estimated that at least half of the materials thrown into the garbage by a person could be recycled instead.

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    2. Recycling Reduces the Size of Landfills

    Every piece of trash that is taken out of the garbage can and put into the recycling reduces the need to build more landfills and expand the ones already in operation. Taking a piece of land and devoting it entirely to becoming a massive mountain of garbage is a waste of resources. It damages the property value of the land in every direction and it removes habitat from wild animals that could make it a home.

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      3. Recycling Reduces the Amount of Materials We Take from the Earth

      The more materials we reclaim from our own homes, the less we need to take from nature. Recycling paper means less deforestation. Recycling metal means less mining and less mining pollution. Keeping nature intact benefits everyone and provides more space for wild adventures.

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      4. It Prevents Waste from Becoming Pollution

      Did you know that there is an enormous floating patch of garbage in the Pacific Ocean that’s alleged to be twice the size of Texas? It’s true and it was entirely preventable. By reusing the materials we already have, we prevent them from finding their way into the environment where they can be harmful to both people and animals. Think of the sea turtles next time you want to throw something in the trash. Eventually everything finds its way to the ocean.

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        5. It Uses Less Energy than Making New Materials

        Processing, reforming, and redistributing recycled materials requires less energy than building new things from scratch. That means we can better use our limited and expensive-to-produce power to accomplish more worthwhile things than building what we already have.

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        6. Recycling Cuts Greenhouse Gas Emissions

        Because it uses less energy than making new materials, recycling can help cut greenhouse gas emissions and slow the progress of climate change. There may not be any polar bears in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, but they will thank you for recycling all the same from their intact ice floes.

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          7. Recycling Creates Jobs

          According to a 2011 NRDC report, increasing the scale of recycling operations could create as many as 2.3 million jobs in the US alone. It takes a lot of person power to sort and process all those recycled goods and with the economy on a half-decade-long roller-coaster ride, it pays to have a way to keep people employed.

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          8. Recycling Saves You Money

          An obvious but potentially unexpected outcome of recycling using less energy and requiring less raw materials is that recycled products cost you less to buy. You can also sell metals and other materials to scrap collectors for a profit. Think of your bank account next time you’re tempted to send an empty soda can to the landfill.

          Featured photo credit: Shirley via pixabay.com

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          Last Updated on January 21, 2020

          The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

          The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

          Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

          your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

            Why You Need a Vision

            Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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            How to Create Your Life Vision

            Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

            What Do You Want?

            The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

            It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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            Some tips to guide you:

            • Remember to ask why you want certain things
            • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
            • Give yourself permission to dream.
            • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
            • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

            Some questions to start your exploration:

            • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
            • What would you like to have more of in your life?
            • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
            • What are your secret passions and dreams?
            • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
            • What do you want your relationships to be like?
            • What qualities would you like to develop?
            • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
            • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
            • What would you most like to accomplish?
            • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

            It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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            What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

            Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

            A few prompts to get you started:

            • What will you have accomplished already?
            • How will you feel about yourself?
            • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
            • What does your ideal day look like?
            • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
            • What would you be doing?
            • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
            • How are you dressed?
            • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
            • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
            • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

            It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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            Plan Backwards

            It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

            • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
            • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
            • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
            • What important actions would you have had to take?
            • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
            • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
            • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
            • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
            • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

            Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

            It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

            Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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