For my Eco-Challenge this week I decided to focus on one of my most difficult habits; leaving electronics plugged in when they’re not in use. While our outlet timers are a valuable tool to remedy this, I know that I will not always have them as a resource. Therefore, I wanted to work on developing the habit on its own.
I did continue using the Belkin outlet strip, as the outlet nearest my desk would otherwise require a great deal of effort to reach every time I wanted to plug something in. However, I did work on trying to remember to turn the extra outlets off when I didn’t need them. In fact, that was where I started with this challenge.
With a little extra mindfulness—I made a point to include “turn off outlets” in my morning mantra—I was able to remember to flip the little switch on my outlet strip as I was leaving for the day. What I then realized, was how little I actually needed those outlets to be on at all. A number of days went by before I tried to use something that was plugged in and had to turn the outlets back on. This surprised me quite a bit, as I often would justify continued use of the outlets with the fact that I needed certain devices turned on at all times. To suddenly realize after two days that this wasn’t true was really eye opening.
While I’m still working on improving my good outlet habits, I feel like just having the outlet timers helps me keep in mind why I need to do it. Unfortunately, I won’t always have SEED to make things easy, so I want to take advantage of it while I can so I can continue working toward sustainable living in the future.
Happy February everyone,
While not everyone has outlet timers, or even outlet strips, you too can make this change an every day habit!
Remembering to unplug your devices after you are done using them can seem a little daunting. Especially when we consider everything we, as college students, need to remember to do every day.
One easy way to remind yourself is to set an alarm on your phone for the time that you leave for school every day. That way you can be reminded to unplug before you go!
If you want to take it one step further and unplug after every time you use a device, place sticky notes on the device you are using to remind you to unplug.
If you want to save energy this Eco-Challenge is for you. Good Luck!
Until next week,
The SEED Team
PS: Here’s a little extra for those who want to do more.