Whether we like it or not, January is quickly approaching. And we all know what that means. Yup, that’s right – it’s New Year’s Resolution time. While self improvement is a noble aspiration, it is also an excellent way to make you feel like ish come February when you haven’t made any strides toward your goal.
This holiday season, I urge you to make a resolution that you will actually keep, and that is to take better care of your environment. Not just because it’s a good thing to do, but also because it’s a gosh darn easy resolution to stick to. Having a greener existence is all about baby steps, which translates into easy success without all of the leg work. Here are some of my favorite tips to get you going to a greener and happier you!
Potential Resolution #1: “I will get all of my books from the library.”
First of all, this is probably something most of us do on a regular basis anyways. Second of all, it saves you money and storage space. Buying books not only wastes a lot of paper and binding materials, but it also takes a lot more energy to package and transport. If you absolutely need to have a certain book at hand, such as a textbook for a class, see if any of your friends are in the class and ask them to go halfsies on the book. You’ll save money on those ridiculously expensive textbooks and you always have the option of checking it out at the library if you get in a bind.
Potential Resolution #2: “I’m no longer going to put up with junk mail.”
Now you really don’t have an excuse not to pick this one up, considering that nobody actually enjoys getting junk mail. The first step is to go paperless with as much as you can – bills, bank statements, etc. Then check out Precycle. For a minimal fee, Precycle will stop most of your junk mail and send you a reusable shopping bag with 2 CFL light bulbs. It’s pretty much the same thing as adopting “getting cool free stuff” as your NY Resolution.
Potential Resolution #3: “I’m going to put a water bottle in my toilet’s water tank.”
I promise there is sound evidence behind this one. According to The Daily Green, filling up a water bottle with water and a little sand and placing it in the water tank will make your toilet use less water when flushing. How, you ask? By displacing the water in the tank so that it can’t fill up all the way and thus, uses less water per flush. Some other great ways to reduce your water bill include turning off the tap when you’re brushing your teeth, timing your showers so that they don’t exceed 10 minutes, and keeping a cold pitcher of water in the fridge so you don’t have to keep the faucet running to get to the right temp. And how easy are all of those!?
Potential Resolution #4: “I’m going to save on gas.”
And guess what? It doesn’t even include driving less! Just driving the speed limit, especially on the freeway, can increase the efficiency of your car and save on gas. Also, if you have the choice, take the route that has the least stop and go. For example, opt for the freeway over going through town, unless there is tons of traffic on the freeway. Also, try to plan your errands out in advance so you can avoid the rush hour and get all of them done in one fell swoop. Lastly, keep your car in tip top shape and it will use less energy. Pay special attention to your tires – flat tires are less efficient and cause your car to use more gas to go the same distance.
So which one will it be? Let me know what you resolve to do this New Year’s and how you’re gonna stick to it!