Stress doesn’t leave you alone when you’re done with work; it follows you home. At least that’s the case if your house or apartment is a disorganized mess filled with unused gadgets, tacky decorations. and piles of junk mail that serve no other purpose than as fire hazards. You’re on the right path if you’ve decided to declutter, but you may want to take a moment and consider your tactics before you begin. There are ways to get rid of things while staying environmentally friendly, and these tips will help you do that.
Keep It Clean for Good
Once the decluttering is done, you need a way to stay neat and tidy, or your home will quickly devolve into chaos once again. To stay green, buy cleaning products that don’t harm the environment, and that means reading the label to ensure all the ingredients are biodegradable.
If you need to make a clean sweep of your home, consider buying an energy-efficient cordless vacuum cleaner. These handy appliances are easier to store without taking up too much space in your closet. Most cordless vacuums use lithium batteries, which have a longer life.
Cut Down on the Paper
Gather up all the old adverts and catalogs lying around the house and throw them in the recycling bin. Once that’s done, you can get down to the task of eliminating paper from your life altogether, or at least reducing it to a minimum. Start by contacting DMAChoice.org to unsubscribe from fliers for a fee, and then reach out to your utilities and insurance company to automate all future payments.
Digitize Your Photos
Photos just seem to build up as the years go by and become harder and harder to store, and that’s why you need to get with the times. Not only will digitizing your old family photos help you save space and stay organized, it preserves them so that future generations can marvel over those old images of your grandparents, but from a computer or tablet while safely stored on the cloud. Besides, you can always print them out again if you need to.
Give Items to Charity
There are charities that can find a new home for your old stuff so they bring comfort and convenience to someone in need. Moving.com suggests bringing your old books to the local library and gently worn clothes to Dress for Success, while Habitat for Humanity Restore and Goodwill are the perfect destination for appliances and furniture.
Recycle Everything Else
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, some 75 percent of the waste that Americans throw away is recyclable. That’s not good, and you don’t want to be a part of this horrible statistic. You’re probably already familiar with the curbside bins near your home for plastic bottles and newspapers, but large items like appliances and furniture are another matter. How they are recycled depends on where you live, and you may need to drive to a recycling center.
Think Before You Buy
The main reason your house got cluttered to begin with was because you bought too much stuff, and if you don’t break that habit, you’ll be back to square one. The lifestyle blog It’s My Favorite Day recommends only shelling out for something that you really love and have a use for, even if it’s on sale, as that lower price tag is what makes many unnecessary items so tempting. Also, do not shop as a form of entertainment or to relieve stress.
If you’ve decluttered the right way, America’s landfills are less full due to your cleaning efforts. That means you can sit back, relax, and enjoy your newly organized home with a clear conscience.
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