The paper vs plastic straw human transition is far from maturity. It really seems like restaurants just stopped providing straws. I’ve noticed this in California and its’ neighboring states. I’m usually served the drink and have to ask if I can get a straw. About %50 of the time, I am given a paper straw. I feel like the transition from plastic to paper is a good idea; but wait, wasn’t this offered to us before? It wasn’t offered with straws; it was offered to us in grocery stores - would you like paper or plastic? Wasn’t the “smart” eco-friendly choice to choose plastic, because the creation of paper-bags relied on cutting down trees?
Now, we are switching back to paper products? I hope that we are using paper-like recycled products to create these “paper” straws. If so, we are still using plastic cup lids. These lids contain the same amount - if not more - of plastic in them as the plastic straws do. When should we expect paper lids too? Protecting the environment is a must. Looking at this transitional plastic to paper phase, I hope that any additional cost isn’t directed to the consumer. Similar to grocery stores these days, we may be bringing our own cups to restaurants soon. I see some people bringing their own custom metal straws to dinner, already.
So, you may be thinking, “how does this affect your finances and how are paper straws related to saving habits.” Well, I’ve noticed that when ever there is a nation-wide change in the way that we do something - no matter how small it may be - it affects me financially in one way or another. How so? When we switched to reusable grocery bags, I had to go purchase a few. I spent around $15. You may be thinking that $15 is not a lot, which it isn’t; however, I still forget them at home all the time, and end up buying the thick plastic bags that grocery stores offer in order to carry out my items. These bags are cheap, but they are still a cost to me. Can I optimize my workflow by keeping reusable bags in my car? The answer is yes.
In this example, we are talking about saving dollars. But, it is the optimization mindset that should be used when viewing all financial decisions in your life. You may have some choices and expenses that when optimized will save you thousands. The money saved from optimization is savings, and savings can be invested. Invested savings will lead you to one day becoming financially independent.