Given the state of global warming, there's no better time to find ways to make your home and your life more eco-friendly. You can start by getting rid of things and habits that clutter your home and keeping it clean with products that won't hurt the environment. Consider this quick guide to help you jump on the green-living bandwagon.
Declutter and Recycle What You No Longer Want or Need
Decluttering your home can improve many elements of your life. Research shows that decluttering is a form of self-care that can help boost your mood, relieve stress, and create more space to nurture creativity. It can even add value to your home if you decide to sell. For those currently considering selling their home, keep track of the improvements you make by taking photos and saving receipts. You can use those to quantify the value of your work.
The first step in decluttering is to get rid of trash and small things that accumulate over the years, then start thinking about the furniture. Avoid dumping big pieces and use a no-waste approach. For example, donate items to people you know or to organizations that will refurbish them. Take pieces you no longer want and DIY them into something you can use in another area of the home. Hire an eco-friendly removal service to come to take items you can't keep.
If you need help organizing your newly decluttered space, work with professional organizers like Confusion Solution to create a space that looks and feels neat, tidy, and put together.
Once your home is free of clutter, create a strategy to keep it that way. For example, make sure you have space in your home to accommodate new items before you make any purchases. If you're unsure about what you can do with new items, take measurements and see if you can move around other things to make room.
Go Digital and Embrace Cloud-Base Storage for Family Photos and Videos
Preserving family memories no longer means you have to print photos and make volumes of family pictures. The more eco-friendly way is to go digital and store your photos and videos digitally. You can use cloud-based software to back up your phone and purchase more memory for your computer to keep everything digitized on your laptop.
You don't have to sacrifice the hundreds of photos already in paper form. You can have digital copies of those made as well. Then, when the paper copies start to fade, those memories won't vanish forever.
DIY Your Own Cleaning Products
Creating your own cleaning products is one of the easiest ways you can go green. For example, you can make a simple cleaner at home just using the following tools and ingredients:
A dish soap bottle
Your favorite citrus essential oil
Natural cleaning products you can buy in the store are often good but expensive. Most of them use the same base ingredients that you can buy much cheaper in bulk and create your own bottles of detergent and cleaning products at home.
Now that you're on your way to a more eco-friendly lifestyle, be mindful of ways you can maintain it. Continuously look for opportunities to reduce, reuse, and recycle. Teach your children and the people you love some of the new ways you're adjusting. You won't always be able to get everyone fully on board, but you can teach them a few important things.
Contributing writer Ed Carter. To read more about him and AbleFutures go to ablefutuers.org.