Skip to content

Some Habits are Easy to Change…..

2010 September 14

amandaA month ago I wrote about being inspired by a kid who encouraged his family, friends, and Boy Scout troop to make changes with bottled water.As a result I decided to make the same change and limit my bottled water consumption.(Breaking Old Habits, August 17 post)My husband and I realized that we were spending money on bottled water when we didn’t need to and we really had no compelling reason for using the bottled water besides convenience. I also felt like it was an unnecessary waste of bottles even though I recycled them.

So the bottled water is gone….and it really wasn’t that hard to make the change.Sure every once in awhile when I am at the store I start to turn down the aisle where the bottled water is and then I remember….I don’t buy bottled water anymore and move down to a different aisle.Now in the mornings I fill up a reusable bottle with cold water from our filtered water pitcher to take to work.Here’s the funny thing – we already had the cold filtered water in our fridge for drinking at home…..all we have to do now is pour that water into a container…and here’s the added bonus that I hadn’t thought of until the other day – we don’t pay for water at our apartment building!I was paying to have convenience in a bottle when I didn’t need to!

So three weeks into our habit change…here’s what is different for my family:

  • Money saved that we used to spend on water.
  • No heavy bottled water to carry up the stairs when we get home from the store.
  • Less recyclables to carry out to the recycle bin at our apartment building = less waste.
  • More kitchen space where we used to store the bottles that didn’t fit in the fridge.
  • More space in the fridge…so an unexpected bonus is that I can see what we have in the fridge better.

Some of these things may seem trivial and you may wonder if these are changes that really make a difference.But here’s the thing…the changes work for my family.By asking my husband to work with me to not buying bottled water, to fill up a reusable bottle, and to stay committed to this change – we did something that we feel good about…and we feel like we are benefitting.

About the author: Amanda Sweda works in EPA’s Office of Environmental Information on web related policies and serves on the Environmental Education Web Workgroup. Amanda is a former Social Studies and Deaf Education teacher and her husband is a 3rd grade teacher so education is an important topic in their home.

Editor’s Note: The opinions expressed in Greenversations are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed here are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

Please share this post. However, please don't change the title or the content. If you do make changes, don't attribute the edited title or content to EPA or the author.

11 Responses leave one →
  1. Ambrosia permalink
    September 14, 2010

    I never got the bottled water craze. I think I have bought only one or two bottles of water in my life. That was only when I was really thristy and they did not have anything else to drink (I buy sodas sometimes) I can not tell the difference between filtered water and what comes out of my tap. However, it is mostly just because I refuse to pay dollars for a few pennies worth of water.

    At my desk at work, I keep one of those glass sun tea jar jugs that I keep full of Tap Water. At home I just use the Tap. So the only time I need a bottle is when I am out and about doing something like biking. Then I just bring a water bottle. I would like to say I do not buy water bottles in order to save the Earth, but it really just because I am cheap. lol.

  2. armansyahardanis permalink
    September 14, 2010

    Years ago, I saw someone who spent much money for unusable, but the other time I also saw the women had an interesting cheap thing. Mrs. Sweda, your ability make me remembered again with those women, so… could I say: “Wasteful a billion but thrifty one, or its billion and wasteful one”. Not stingy but (?) environmentalism….

  3. Tina Chen permalink
    September 14, 2010

    Congrats for making the switch Amanda! I also find that having different sizes of reusable water containers helps with keeping this habit…so you have enough water for a day trip or a 6hr hike.

    I just got back from a trip to Seoul, South Korea and observed something that I wished we had in the US. Almost all public cafes, restaurants, food courts, etc offered free water, either from a pitcher or from a water-filter machine. That helps with making sure when you’re low on water, you have a reliable, free, and convenient source for getting more water.

    A lot of times, I find myself forced to buy bottled water when I am “on-the-go” because there isn’t a free/reliable source of drinking water that I can re-fill from.

  4. pedro jesus pato permalink
    September 15, 2010

    suelo ir a la fuente a coger el agua que bebo en casa ,pero reconozco que es un poco incomodo pero es gratificante y mas sano mientrs pueda ire a por el agua a la fuente,el agua del manantial es muy buena y el coste 000€ un saludo a todos

  5. Brenda-EPA permalink
    September 15, 2010

    Amanda: excellent blog. It is the small changes that lead us to bigger changes. I still don’t “get” the bottled water craze in America and its territories. We have the Safe Drinking Water Act…. I have drank bottled water only on Mexico. I drink tap water when I go to restaurants. When waiters give me the puzzled look I retort “I work at EPA, this water is safe”. I encourage people to look into their water company bill for the annual parameter reports.

  6. maria scoones permalink
    September 15, 2010

    realy it,s easy to top up an good glass bottle than go and get water bottles nothing else to do …..

  7. Stuart Grunert permalink
    September 15, 2010

    Way to go, I totally agree. Bottled water is such a waste. Even the 5 gallon bottles that go on water coolers. We can even be more conscious of the environment and drink plain filtered water. Just make sure to remove the chlorine. You can also go with a water ionizer which will even enhance the water benefits. Visit my website for more info

  8. Greg Hayes permalink
    September 22, 2010

    I don’t buy alot of bottle water coz I agree in this blog. I can save money if I will just use a filter water from our house. And it can lessen the waste at home. And its not too heavy especially when you go to the mall and buy your needs at home. I dont buy bottle water. i just refill a small container of bottled water in our house and I will bring it in my office. No need to buy alot of bottle water in the store. I just use my filtered water.

  9. Adam permalink
    November 4, 2010

    Here goes the bottled water conversation once again.
    For as many people care about the pollution aspect of bottled water containers etc, there’s just an equal, if not more, group of people who couldn’t care less about the environment.

    Factor into the above tourists in strange locales, they definitely need bottled water, seeing as they’re in unfamiliar surroundings etc.

    This discussion needs to be championed from the Government, and trickled down to the masses for there to be meaningful change IMHO.


  10. Juan permalink
    March 28, 2011

    Thank you, very nice post

  11. cindy permalink
    May 15, 2012

    What are your comments on water ionizers?

Leave a Reply

Note: You can use basic XHTML in your comments. Your email address will never be published.

Subscribe to this comment feed via RSS