The Power of a Fork: Does individual action really matter?

A Drop in the Ocean Shop Does individual action really matter?
Listen to the audio of this post here:

 This post first appeared in our weekly Make Waves Mondays email series on July 25, 2022.

I don't know about you but I cannot believe we're almost through July and therefore almost through Plastic Free July 2022, but alas, here we are.

And as we're coming to the end of Plastic Free July, you may be wondering, "Where do I go from here? How do I continue my plastic free journey and how do I get those around me to use less plastic too?"

Lemme tell you a story, friend. Because this life lesson was hugely impactful for my own sustainability journey and how I structured A Drop in the Ocean - and this blog.

In January of 2017, I was mindlessly scrolling Facebook, and noticed a coworker had shared a Buzzfeed video titled “I Tried to Make Zero Trash for 30 Days.” Intrigued, I clicked play.

I considered myself an environmentalist my entire life. I mean, hey, I put everything in my recycling bin and took reusable bags to the grocery store….most of the time. I was crushing the eco-game!

But watching this 5-minute video….my world was rocked. In that moment I decided I was going zero waste.

A few days later, I was getting ready to leave for work, and I remembered it was Friday. Chipotle Friday. The best day of the work week when all of my coworkers and I would pile into one car and eat way too much Chipotle.

Knowing what trash was in store for me, I grabbed a fork from my kitchen drawer and headed out the door.

When we sat down to eat, I pulled that fork out of my bag, and started eating. My coworkers paused, looking at me, puzzled.

“Why do you have a metal fork in your purse?”

“Oh I saw this video the other day of someone who tried to go zero waste, and I decided that I want to reduce my waste too.” 🤷‍♀️

That was it. That was the conversation.

And yet, just a few weeks later, everyone at that table had their own fork. Eventually this morphed into our own straws too, and even our own cups. And a few months after that, the department gifted travel utensil sets to the entire team of nearly 100.

All because of one fork, one person, one video shared on Facebook.

Our daily actions are powerful. Each day we have the power to choose how we will live our life and what kind of impact we will have on the planet, and on our communities.

What may feel so small, like taking one metal fork to Chipotle, can have immense ripples. We may not always see them, but the ripples are there.

You’ve got this, friend. Your actions matter. You matter. Don't you forget it.

P.S. If you ever need a reminder that our actions matter, head over to the EcoWarrior Pod Facebook group. I’m always so inspired by the community there, and would love to have you join us.


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