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Small Steps, Bigger Impacts!

by J.X. Leiva 2 years ago in how to
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A Few Life Hacks that You Might Be Already Doing to Help Your Environment!

Small Steps, Bigger Impacts!
Photo by Photo Boards on Unsplash

What are you doing to help out the environment? As a 23-year-old Latino, my parents have taught me to never waste anything unless it has absolutely no use. I grew up with doing peculiar things, that at the time, didn't make sense to me. However, little did I know, those peculiar things ended up being small everyday life hacks, as well as being something that helped the environment.


Growing up, I've always been told to unplug or turn off anything I'm not using; this includes lights, appliances, accessories, and electronics. My parents, mother especially, has always told me that there are methods I can use these things more wisely, and without wasting any electricity. These methods, or hacks, have been implemented now in my everyday routine.

If you want more light in a room while its daylight, one way to gain more light is by placing a mirror on the opposite wall of a window, that way the natural light can reflect off the mirror, causing a natural illuminating effect. This illumination effect can also work if you have brightly colored knick-knacks, furniture, paintings, and carpets. Instead of leaving your porch light or your front door light on for the whole night, you can buy solar-powered lights. These lights automatically turn on at night, and recharge during the day time, using solar energy from the sun. If you do use lightbulbs, use fluorescent lightbulbs.

When it comes to some appliances like a blender, my grandmother uses a plastic bag and rolling pin for smoothies, just make sure all the fruit or vegetables are frozen before you start mashing. This hack is not only fun, but it also saves you some electricity. When it comes to laundry, try using the dryer when it's for emergencies only. If you don't need clothes immediately, and the weather is nice outside, air dry them. Not only are you saving electricity, but you're also shortening your electric bill.

When it comes to phones, one life hack that you can use is buying a solar panel portable charger. This way, you can charge your phone, whenever, wherever you like, and you won't be able to waste any electricity. However, if you do need to plug your phone to an outlet, put your phone on airplane mode. This allows for your phone to shut off applications and, turn off your wifi and make your phone charge faster.


Since I was young, my other always have taught me to place pots and empty milk jugs outside, before it starts raining, so we can use that water to water the plants instead of using the hose water. This water can also be used to wash your car, garden equipment, essentially anything regarding your lawn or outside.

When it comes to showering, set a timer for 6-minute showers. You have 1 minute to get wet, 1 minute to shampoo, 1 minute for body wash, 1 minute to scrub, 1 minute for rinsing, 1 minute to dry. Also, after you shower, place a bowl or hefty bag under your shower head to catch any water. This water can be used to wash your hands, or water plants, or other things. When it comes to brushing your teeth, I've been taught to use no more than a measuring cup to measure out no more than 2 cups of water to brush your teeth or wash your face. When it comes to the toilet, you can place 2 bricks in the fil-tank so when you flush, you can use less water.

In the kitchen, wait until you use a full load in the dishwasher to clean your dishes. If you have to do your dishes by hand, close the drain of your sink, and let the water accumulate. After you finished, use the murky water to water your plants outside.

If you have time, you can measure out exactly the amount of water that you need and you can handwash your clothes. after you did, you can use the water to clean out any tools you have. If you use organic soap, out of natural ingredients, you can use the water to water your plants.

Reusable items

When it comes to certain objects, you can reuse them more than once to help you and the environment around you.

Plastic bottles can be reused as water bottles. If you gather a bunch of water bottles and tape them together, you can put them inside a pillowcase with cotton to make a small ottoman. If you cut the top half of a water bottle, it can be used as a funnel.

Plastic Bags are either recycled or used to carry certain groceries on hooks, such as fruits and bread. Bags can also be used as hair ties when you roll them up. If you just got your clothes dry cleaned, use a bag as a cover to prevent it from wrinkling. My grandfather has taught me if you place a piece of plastic bag over a hole of a container, you can melt the bag, allowing it to seal and fix the container or bowl of some sort. If you need a volleyball or just a normal ball, you can fill a plastic ball up with cotton and tie it up well, and boom you have a last-minute ball.

When it comes to clothing, I always upcycle. If you don't need or want a article of clothing no more, you can cut it up and use it as rags. If you sew the bottom part of a shirt and open up the collar of a shirt up, you can use that as a reusable grocery bag. If you don't want any more pants, you can cut them to your size, a make them into shorts.

When it comes to any junk mail, newspaper, or any old bill, you can collect those pieces of paper and use it as a fire starter for when you grill or campfire. Any blank paper can be used as printer paper.

When it comes to saving the environment, there are a lot of things you can do. The majority of these hacks have been passed down by parents. Who knew that these odd things that I did, not only made more efficient, it also made me realize that these small things help make a difference in this world today. As far as I am concerned, any little bit of help goes a long way.

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About the author

J.X. Leiva

Hey Y'all. My name is Jason, is your reading this, your probably wondering what I have to offer. WELP! Let me just tell yah that my life comes with funny situations that offer life lessons and advice I can dispose of. Like a sh*tty sitcom.

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