While this seems like a basic concept, you would be surprised how much of my job is moving trash from living spaces to the trash. Empty cereal boxes in the pantry next to practically empty (and stale) bags of chips; empty toilet paper wrappers tucked back behind the new packages in the bathrooms; clothing tags in closets, and receipts everywhere.
When we think of living in trash we think of the show Hoarders, but many of us are living not-so-peacefully with our trash, we just don’t see it.
Identify the trash. Look around your house and your office. See how many dryer sheets, food packages, pieces of junk mail, flyers, napkins, shopping bags, and other assorted pieces of trash you have sitting around. There is nothing wrong with you, or your family. We all do it. But if you want a more peaceful home, this is a great (and easy) place to start.
Put it away, not down. We get so caught up in our thoughts that we tear the tags off our clothes to put them on, forgetting to toss the tags in the trash. Our kids open a new video game only to leave the scissors and the packaging on the island in their excitement to play. The causes are innocent enough and taking control is simply a matter of awareness. Recognize when you create the trash and dispose of it right away.
Put a trash receptacle in every room. Throwing your trash away is a lot easier when it doesn’t require a special trip. Make sure the recycle bin is accessible too. It is not worth it to invest in a complex sorting system if it is too far away or so inconvenient that you’ll never use it. The solution can be as simple as a second trash can, designated for recycling.
Make it a habit. Part of your habit should be to empty all the trash receptacles throughout the house on a regular basis. Establish rewards for children who get on board and everything will go much smoother.
So, the next time you open a package or pull off a clothing tag, toss right into the trash and you’ll be on your way to a less-cluttered home in no time.