The 6 R's we all need to live by for a better planet!

We hear about the importance of recycling all the time. I remember as a kid going on a school trip to a recycling centre (thrilling I know!). But I'm glad that the practice of recycling is now engrained in our minds from a young age, I'm sure past generations didn't experience the same. It is our responsibility to educate current and future generations that there's a lot more we need to do and, in fact, recycling is at the bottom of the list when it comes to saving our planet! 
In our no.1 spot is...
Say what? Yep let's take it back a few steps, if you refuse single use plastics in the first place; you eliminate the problem of deciding what to do with it afterwards.  A small minded response might be 'well if I don't use it - someone else will'. The fact is if we all start refusing plastics, eventually the demand for it dies and less and less is made. Some of the things you can refuse are plastic straws, coffee cups, plastic bottles, take away containers, plastic bags - there are reusable alternatives to all of these!
Like above, reducing what we buy means less waste to worry about. If you can't entirely refuse plastic, how can you reduce it? When doing the weekly shop pick bulk options to save on overall packaging… You'll also save money shopping this way! Stop buying 'stuff' for the sake of it and start spending more on better quality items. As Vivienne Westwood said 'Buy less. Choose well. Make it last'.
As mentioned above there are reusable alternatives for everything in our modern world. Instead of using a plastic straw for 15 minutes and then chucking it away, invest in some stainless steel straws that you can reuse for years to come. Instead of eating take out for lunch every day; take reusable lunch boxes with homemade food, you'll save money, be healthier and help the planet. Then say you do eat out once a month, you don't have to feel guilty about the waste, always remember how far you've come and the amount of waste you've reduced. 
Let's take things back to basics. Ever heard a grandparent talk about repairing holes in trousers by patching it up? This is the basic principle. If something breaks can it be repaired instead of replaced? If so get repairing!
Maybe the trousers just cant be fixed, after many attempts your ready to chuck them but hang on... can they be repurposed? Could the material be washed and cut up to use for scraps to clean the car with? There's always another purpose to be found and in turn it will save you from going out and buying more.
And finally, if you can't refuse, reduce, reuse, repair or repurpose then recycle. It's better than winding up in a landfill (although a lot of recycling still does because it's not recycled in the right way). Make sure to educate yourself on what can and can't be recycled, clean out food containers before sending out for recycling and find out what those little symbols mean on the back of packaging.
Thanks for reading and sharing an interest in saving the planet- if you've discovered anything new from this post please spread the word and feel free to share!