Reduce. Reuse. Recycle.

Reduce reuse recycle is a slogan that many of you will be familiar with from environmental campaigns, but I also like to put this phrase to clients I work with when organising their homes.


Getting organised isn’t just about sorting out the things you have, deciding where it should live and ultimately saving time, it’s also about being mindful and conscious of what you are buying, what you are wasting, what you really need and what you can reuse.


The average adult in the UK will throw away around 400 kg of waste every year. That’s roughly the weight of a full-size piano or a sports motorbike. It’s quite shocking isn’t it?


As well as composting food waste and recycling our paper, plastic and glass we should also be mindful of the general waste that we generate from our homes.


I wrote last month about “The Dreaded Drawer” - when sorting out areas of our home, it is important to stop and think about what is getting thrown away and what could actually be reused.


This month’s blog is going to give you a few tips on how to reduce reuse and recycle whilst getting yourself organised at home.


  1. How can you know what you need more of if you don’t know what you’ve got? Have you ever found yourself doing the weekly shop and putting a hand soap, or washing up liquid or something similar in your trolley, not because you need it but because you don’t know if you have any at home? Getting organised will stop you buying more than you need, will help to reduce the amount of plastic being consumed and will save you money - it all adds up! Plan time to do a mini stock take of everyday essentials and you will be able to be far more mindful about what is needed.

  2. Sort, don’t just tidy. When sorting out a cupboard, drawer or space in your home don’t sort it out and just put it all back, but tidier! Throw away the things that you genuinely can’t use - you’re bound to have broken items, empty pens etc (remember to recycle what you can) but then think about what can be reused. Storing things in an organised way is key, but don’t go out and buy another plastic Tupperware or another box - check what you’ve already got that can be reused.

  3. Don’t think and click! It’s really easy to panic buy - back to school is looming and your children need new stationery. Don’t do the quick and easy option of logging onto Amazon, or any other online retailer, ordering and having your goods delivered within 24 hours. STOP AND CHECK WHAT YOU HAVE! Knowing where everything is will make this far easier to find in future and will stop you spending unnecessarily and accumulating yet more future waste in your home.


Remember, it’s not about trying to do it in one big hit as that will likely lead to overwhelm. Instead, approach your organisation in bite size chunks, set yourself some goals and enjoy that sense of achievement when you add a tick to your list!



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© 2021 Rebecca Crayford, Henley-on-Thames