Going green in your home office

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One of the reasons people enjoy working from home is they get to control their schedule. There’s also the added benefit controlling your surroundings and having everything the way you like it. This also means you can take control of the waste and carbon footprint of left by your home office.

Paper

Only print what you absolutely must print! Save first drafts or unused print outs for scrap paper or even for printing test sheets.

Keep a recycling bin or trashcan dedicated for recyclables close by. You’re more likely to recycle paper if it’s easy for you to toss it in a bin.

Buy recycled paper, envelopes, packing supplies, and more. You’ll most likely save money, too!

Electronics

Unplug what you aren’t using, including the printer, your chargers (cell, tablet, laptop), docking stations, and more. Get into a routine of unplugging everything (from the wall!) when you leave your office in the evening. Alternatively, plug your electronics into a power cord and turn everything off at once.

Recycle electronics when you can, such as cell phones, tablets, laptops, and desk computers.

Don’t throw away those ink cartridges! Either refill or recycle them.

Lighting

Go solar where you can. Solar lamps for your desk or solar charging stations for your phone are affordable and save electricity.

Position your desk for maximum natural sunlight. As an added bonus, you should be warmer with more sunlight, leading to needing less heat in the winter.

Just because you are home working doesn’t mean you need lights on throughout the house. Turn on the ones you need and remember to turn off the lights when you leave a room.

Air

Pretty up your office and add to healthier air by bringing in green plants to your office space. This helps your lungs and your emotional well-being! Install a programmable thermostat to help regulate your use of heat in the winter.

Office furniture

Shop at second hand stores for your office furniture. Also look for online and brick and mortar auctions for good office furniture bargains.

Buying new? Consider eco-friendly materials, such as fast-growing woods, upholstered with organic fabrics, finished with non-toxic chemicals and paints, and locally made.

Spring is the perfect time to look around and make some good, green changes to your home office. You’ll feel better, save money, and who knows, maybe even be more productive!

About Lisa Karl

Lisa Karl is a Partner at Savvy Digital Business, a social media strategy consulting and training firm. The foundation of SDB is to help small business owners discover the best way to connect with their customers online, and through those connections, grow their business. Previous to founding SDB, Lisa was a consultant to small and medium size businesses, developing and implementing marketing strategy plans. Visit her blog to learn more about social strategy, and you can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, YouTube, and LinkedIn.

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