Environmentally Conscious Ways to Rid Your Living Space of Clutter
Clutter plays a significant role in affecting emotions, productivity, and overall wellness. It contributes to stress, inhibits creativity, and can leave you feeling overwhelmed. Our brains get over-stimulated by mess and are signaled that our work isn’t done, so we become distracted from what’s important. If it’s time to take control of your clutter and you need some ideas on how to begin, you’re in luck. Below you will find some eco-friendly tips for decluttering, courtesy of Product Of My Environment
The goal of decluttering your entire house in one go will probably feel like a herculean task. Start small, slow, and simple. Choose one 12-by-12 space and conquer just that space. If the joy is gone, you don’t feel fulfilled, or you feel internal pressure to tackle the whole house, it’s time to stop, reset, and start again another day. Don’t put expectations on yourself that you have to be a minimalist. With each thing, ask yourself the following questions:
- Do you use it?
- Do you need it?
- Do you want it?
- Do you love it?
- Does someone else need it?
- Does it work or have a purpose?
Sell in the Second-Hand Economy
Parting with your belongings can feel a little sad — especially if there are memories attached to them — but there’s a silver lining. When you participate in the second-hand economy and sell the stuff you no longer use or need, that extra cash will provide a little excitement that you can save or use for something fun. An added benefit of participating in the second-hand economy is that you save usable products from waste and keep large and small items out of the landfill. An item you no longer need may be just what someone is looking for.
Recycle or Donate
Perhaps you don’t need an item, can’t sell it, and don’t want to add it to the landfill. If that’s the case, you have the option to donate it for parts, donate it to a charity if (it’s gently used), or recycle it. Old bedding, appliances, electronics, and even packaging don’t need to end up in the landfill. Some towns or cities collect recyclable items at certain times of the year — particularly those that cause environmental harm if disposed of in the landfill — such as chemicals, metals, glass, and plastic. Also, animal shelters are often in need of well-worn linens to be used as clean-up rags.
A wonderful thing about technology is that it allows you to store treasured memories without causing clutter, and you have the added benefit of being able to preserve the memory from deterioration or damage. Scan photos, children’s artwork, letters, cards, and other treasured mementos, and store them in the cloud or on compact external hard drives. Digital files not only help you save space and preserve your memories, but they also make it easier to share the memories with friends and family. Cloud storage is a perfect solution to clutter since it allows you to preserve your documents off-site, secures your files in case technological devices crash, and gives access to anyone you choose.
Clean as You Go
As you work on decluttering, clean as you go. Take the opportunity as you move stuff out to do a deep clean. Since you’re working to make your home a happy and healthy environment, take the next step and choose cleaning products that are safe for you, your loved ones, and the environment. Eco-friendly cleaning products (a 32-ounce cleaner is priced around $6 on Amazon) will protect your health and clean the air in your home, and they generally contain ingredients that are biodegradable and non-toxic.
Broaden Your Practices
Most of us spend more of our waking hours working than not, so it makes sense to take your principles into the workplace. This might be as simple as approaching your supervisor with more environmentally-conscious policies. If you’re fortunate enough to be the person making those decisions for your team, you can even take things as far as transitioning to a location that favors green entrepreneurs. Think about how you can ensure your actions in your workplace reflect your ideals.
If you’re tired of feeling the mental and physical impacts of clutter, it’s time to conquer the chaos. Start small and embrace the process by going through small areas of your home at a time and deciding what you want to keep, sell, or give away. Take advantage of resources by using recycling centers or programs, technology to preserve memories, and eco-friendly products to clean as you go. You will likely find that a decluttered home is both energizing and relaxing.
Want to do more for the earth? Opt for apparel and accessories made with environmentally friendly and recycled materials, which you can find at Product Of My Environment.
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