I have been thinking a lot about garbage recently. Specifically, how did we, as a society, get to the point where we make such massive quantities of garbage? When it comes down to it, I think a lot of our waste arises from ‘convenience’.

Think about it:

  • Pre-cut vegetables sealed in a bag  – convenience
  • Disposable diapers – convenience
  • Single serve coffee pods – convenience
  • Take out food – convenience

…the list goes on.

But what are we doing with all this ‘extra time’ we have supposedly created for ourselves through these purchases?

On the surface I think many of us subconsciously justify these purchases under the premise that we can now spend more time with family, on our hobbies, or relaxing.Have we really bought ourselves more time? Or just more garbage? Sometimes I wonder if the very things we are trying to achieve through convenience, we are actually eliminating.

Consider that 50 years ago, preparing food and having a sit down dinner was a time to connect with family. Hanging clothes on the line took you and the kids outside on sunny days. The smell of a large pot of coffee brewing created a soothing Saturday morning routine. A walk to the local video store to peruse the aisles at the video rental store instead of flipping through Netflix.

I am not here to suggest that our whole lives should center around doing the dishes. I just want to encourage you to think about it for a minute. Next time you purchase a convenience item, ask yourself: What am I doing with this extra time?