Mayurakshi is an assistant professor in a teacher training college in West Bengal. Being a student and then a teacher of social science she has always felt a strong connection with the word ‘eco’. Another thing that makes her aware and conscious is travelling a lot to the places surrounded by breathtaking natural perspectives & vibes. Over the last two years, she has been working on sustainable thinking, eco-pedagogy, local environmental movements. Research has made her realized that the only choice we are left with is conscious living. Initially, she started her social media accounts to post some random stuff she loves doing but gradually she felt the very need of generating awareness towards sustainability, zero waste living, and eco-friendly choices through her everyday practices, thoughts, and sharings.
Beginning of Her Sustainability Journey
Sustainability is all about addressing the necessities of the present without compromising the capacity of people in the future to address their needs. The word “needs” has everything to do with our lives and our planet as she does believe. She says "Overconsumption of our resources & being heedless has already impacted our lives in every possible way. While sustainability improves our lives by ensuring our environment and safeguarding natural resources for people in the future".
Her Sustainability Philosophy
She firmly believes that living a sustainable life is not an overnight process and you can’t expect 100% participation in everything you ask for. Being an imperfect practitioner she always feels the importance of thinking overdoing. Critical reflection over everything you see, hear with a tendency to analyze the utility aspects can make a difference. Don’t compare your journey with your fellow practitioners if you can’t connect instead start from whatever you have and enjoy the unlearning without judging yourself.
By reusing and recycling her trashes she has reduced 75% of plastic waste of her house to go landfills. She has opted for composting, making fertilizers, bio-enzymes to ensure mindful consumption of her kitchen waste. She has furthermore stopped buying polyester, rayon, crepes to support slow fashion and switched to zero waste self-care to promote eco-friendly living.
She usually starts her day drinking homemade digestion powder mixed in lukewarm water with her plants on the rooftop. She also makes sure not to throw out any kitchen waste and try to consume organic homemade foods every single day. She is a plant lover and has planted numerous plants. Every day she tries to give at least two hours to her plants and one hour for making any organic fertilizer, hair mask, cooking anything by going zero waste. Apart from taking classes for my college and spreading awareness about sustainability, she does her research works, reads more about zero waste, follows others sustainability content on social media to gain more information, and spends more time with nature.
Managing the Challenges
The biggest difficulty is our mindsets and negative thoughts. She says that people frequently ask her “Why are you doing so? Are you getting money? “People these days tend to make valuation of everything you do in terms of rank, worth, and material assets”. Sustainability is not a business deal for her and nobody is paying her for sharing my thoughts and practices. This is the way of living she chose for the betterment of the environment, society, and this planet. Making conscious decisions is a simple yet extremely effective thing to make a change.
The effects of human unconscious choices are pretty much visible. She says that already we are struggling with the climate crisis, plastic pollution, global warming, desertification, food crisis and these are not legends anymore. She gets eco-anxiety when she notices people throwing trashes everywhere. She believes this is a journey of growing and finding out the solutions instead of highlighting the problems we can’t skip now.
She always relies on her intrinsic motivation and tries to comprehend where her focus needs to be. Her contents are exactly what she feels and do on that issue and she just trusts her instincts. She always tries to analyze a problem from everyone’s perspective first, read articles on that, do thorough research, and come up with a solution that can be easier to follow for everyone. Her only focus is to make the zero-waste journeys easier, simple, and effective for people who are confused but eager to incorporate zero-waste living into their lives.
Advice for Aspiring Zero-waste Person
For a beginner, she always says that start from what you already have. A sustainable journey is not confined to glass jars, bamboo brushes, soap bars, cotton clothes. If you have plastic jars at home repurpose those, if you have plants at home use them for your hair and self-care, don’t buy unnecessary stuff if you don’t need them. Reuse, reduce, recycle, rot this is the mantra. Think more often about how to reduce your plastic waste by switching to eco-friendly products, make conscious choices, follow our age-old homemade recipes, and try to make optimum use of everything you have before throwing them out.