As I advise when learning new organizing habits, you don’t have to try to do them all at once. Pick one or two tips at a time and work them into your daily or weekly habits. Some tips simply require a one-time change, e.g. changing your shower head to a more efficient one, and others will require some reminders to keep it going.
Use less electricity:
- Unplug appliances when not in use
- Use the “no heat” setting on your dishwasher
- Install a programmable thermostat
- Close heat and A/C vents in rooms that you’re not using
- Switch to low wattage light bulbs and turn lights off when not in use.
Use less water:
- Don’t run the water unnecessarily
- Do a full load of dishes or laundry at a time
- Fix a leaking faucet
- Spend less time in the shower or replace your shower head with a more efficient one.
- Save rain water to water plants. Plants prefer it!
Recycle and Reuse:
- Bring your own shopping bags to the grocery store.
- Participate in your county’s recycle program, if offered.
- Host a clothing swap with your friends
- Instead of buying new, check to see if you already have a substitute you can use, or try to live without it altogether. Think “less is more”.
- Swap magazines and books with friends and family.
- Take your old electronics to an electronics recycling center, e.g. old computers, tube TVs, VCRs, etc.
- If you have a Best Buy store nearby, check to see if they are participating in the Best Buy Electronics Recycling Program.
- Appliances: Select energy saving appliances over an appliance that may cost less, but will end up being more costly to run.
- Vehicles: If you’re in the market to buy a new vehicle, consider a hybrid model.
Finally, reduce your carbon footprint:
- If it’s available, take public transportation or walk or bike (if it’s safe to do so).
- Carpool to work with a colleague – it doesn have to be every day. Take a look at both of your schedules to see if you can carpool at least one day a week.
What one thing can you do today to get started?