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10 Incredible Ways To Reuse Everyday Waste

10 Incredible Ways To Reuse Everyday Waste

It’s embarrassing how much we discard in a day. So much, that I’ve had it up to here with throwing out so much – just because we’re a nation of consumers and discarders.

Looking to save the environment and live a healthier life, I looked online to educate myself about reusing everyday household items.

Interestingly I find that, industries and manufacturing units have also opted the green way – refurbishing & reutilizing almost 90% of the original material. That is going to save cost and our non-renewable sources. Isn’t that good?

Here are a few life “hacks” you can start using today at home.

1. Dish Soap Bottles

You’ve probably heard of this one before, but it’s so benefitting to saving the environment (and your fridge) that it bares repeating:

Using old dish soap bottles (thoroughly cleaned out) to sore ounces of pancake batter. Yum yum! Or, if you’re not in the pancake-breakfast mood, you can refill the bottle with plain old-fashioned, nutritious water for all your gardening needs.

2. Share Leftovers

If you’re like me, the idea of leftovers is repulsive – there’s nothing notoriously wrong with leftovers, of course. Except the name, leftovers; makes me think of a lion who can’t devour an entire gazelle and it sits there for days on end, collecting flies, mosquitos, and thousands of diseases and bacteria.

It makes sense to give leftovers to neighbours – especially if your neighbours are your family. My aunts live next to me and across the street and I made a habit of sharing my leftovers with them. Because we live so close to each other, I just pick up the Tupperware/containers the next day. No food wasted.

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3. T-Shirts

A lot of my shirts and t-shirts have holes in them. Although I still love them, a part of growing as a human includes getting rid of old things that have passed their expiration date.

A few cool, useful ways to reuse old t-shirts include..

  • Sewing them into a pillow
  • Quilting a thin blanket
  • Using them for layering in an animal’s crate
  • Or, if you plan on moving, wrapping them up around fragile objects.

4. Banana Peels

Yes, banana peels. One way to make the use of old banana peels is using them to shine your shoes. Honestly, these do a wonder of cleaning your shoes.

My old lady and I have also had a wonderful time whitening our teeth in a day or two, using banana peels. Simply cut apart a few slices to however wide your teeth are then apply the banana strip for a few minutes. You will notice a difference in less than 5 days.

Other uses for banana peels include removing warts, splinters, and gardening. There are a ton of uses for banana peels you won’t believe.

5. Egg Cartons

I love eggs. When the old lady and I go grocery shopping every 2 weeks, I make an executive decision to pick up 3 cartons of 12 large eggs (total $7.50). Each of those 36 eggs is gone by the next time for groceries. At least 4 eggs every other day for breakfast, an egg salad sandwich for lunch and 3 eggs before bed (which the protein keeps me sated and full during sleep – preventing my stomach from eating itself alive)…

Yeah, eggs are my life.

One example of ways to reuse egg cartons is using them as a freezing tray. Think about it: it’s spaghetti night and you made one too many meatballs. The noodle-to-meat ratio will be askew if you pile them all in there.

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Solution? Store those meatballs in your thoroughly-cleaned egg cartons!

You can even use them to store loose change, golf balls, etc. Go crazy.

6. Old Socks

Are you terrible with socks? I’m terrible with socks. One half goes missing, I spend two minutes (if that) looking for it, then give up, go out and buy a package of 6 more socks.

The process repeats itself. It’s insane!

Not only does it make me feel like an idiot (at the time), but it wastes money. That’s without considering the fact that, during laundry time, at least half of those lost halves pop up.

Yes, half of them pop up. What happens to the other half? I don’t know. Maybe sock ninjas take them in the middle of the night. It’s happened before.

And, you guessed it, I throw the newly-found half away. Why shouldn’t I? There’s no need for them with these new socks.

Luckily, I’ve found out new uses for old socks that include:

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  • Using them as dog/cat toys (or catnip for the cat – be sure to sew catnip socks shut)
  • Wearing them over dirty shoes when you’re inside the home
  • Use them as containers for paper clips, screws, bolts, hair ties, etc.

7. Shoe Boxes

My old lady loves shoes. There’s no reason to blame her – people want what they want. We’re both guilty of having too many shoeboxes pile up in the storage room, though, she wears those new shoes every time, she had to go hospital for a check-up, just so that she can look down on her feet and forget the miseries she is going through. There I saw a microscope having a tag “refurbished – saving planet!” Wasn’t that interesting?

My crime is the Well I’ll use it for later syndrome. My logic is storing handwritten notes and manuscripts and what not in the shoeboxes. It seems smart, right?

One way to put those boxes to use is by using them as storage bins for the closet. How convenient! All it takes is wrapping paper and scotch tape to hold the paper together. How much money will you save by doing this, instead of buying $15-25 storage bins?

True, those store-bought bins let you store more… but (if you’re like us) you might end up chugging a whole bunch of unrelated/found “junk” in them and make another mess. Shoeboxes gives you chances to store your similar items in manageable boxes – each for exactly what you need.

8. Milk Jugs

Along with eggs, I love milk. It is a personal struggle to make one jug more than a week; I have to force myself not to drink the entire jug that day. This like, shoeboxes and egg cartons, creates a huge quantity of tossed away gallon jugs.

One way to deal with empty jugs is to poke small, tack-sized holes in the bottoms of the jugs and bury them in your garden or planting pots. Wham! Instant watering jugs, providing a slow and steady irrigation for your lovelies. This is a GREAT way of going green and saving the environment.

Have the same problem with 2-liter bottles? (We do – we can’t get enough of 2-liter Ginger Ale. At $1.59 per bottle, you can see why.) A simple way for reusing those cleaned-out bottles, that helps the environment, is to transform bottles into bird feeders.

9. Coffee Grinds

I’m starting to feel self-conscious. This is why: I love coffee! Eggs, milk, coffee? Yes, I’m the trifecta. But, doctors have reported that coffee is actually healthy for you.

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If you’re like me, enough is never enough – I personally can plow through four mugs before noon.

So, what to do with all those used coffee grounds? Rather than throw them out (where they’ll be sent to the landfill), place them in a jar and set it in your fridge. This little hack is phenomenal for obliterating odors!

Another trick is a bit simpler and gardeners swear by it: use coffee grounds around garden plants to keep plant-killing ants and slugs at bay. I don’t know why this works, but people swear it does.

Bonus tip: my old lady swears that using coffee grounds removes old, dried skin from her face. Every morning she grabs several scoops and slathers it over her face – and you know what? She looks absolutely beautiful whenever I see her. Maybe there’s something to this.

10. Reuse Toilet Paper Rolls

There’s no going around it, everybody goes through toilet paper like no tomorrow. There’s no shame in it – we eat a lot, we drink a lot. Going to the bathroom frequently is a sign of a healthy digestive tract.

Still, rather than sending all those toilet paper rolls to the garbage can, reusing them for DIY projects is pretty cool – and a far more healthy alternative.

Some awesome things you can take a stab at are:

  • Toy race cars
  • USB cord containers (this one I personally tried and absolutely LOVE!)
  • They can even serve as cable cord holders

There’s no shortage of toilet paper craft projects you can try on for size.

Going green isn’t a difficult choice – it’s just a matter of applying it yourself and thinking outside the box. Start making a difference today; for yourself, the future of your planet, and hopefully your children.

Featured photo credit: pixabay.com via pixabay.com

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Last Updated on September 16, 2019

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

More About Procrastination

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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