When many people think about what it means to live in ways that are kind to the planet, they envision reusing almost everything they buy, switching to brands that have Earth-conscious practices, and walking to work instead of driving their cars. Although you can indeed do those things, such drastic measures might make you feel like you’re missing out by avoiding many of the things that make life pleasant or at least convenient. Fortunately, you don’t have to sacrifice significant things to show your commitment to environmental sustainability.

Install Energy-Saving Light Bulbs

Statistics indicate you could save up to $45 annually by using light bulbs bearing the ENERGY STAR label. That amount may not seem like a lot, but it’s important to remember that these kinds of light bulbs have other advantages. For example, they typically last longer and offer more brightness compared to traditional bulbs. That should mean you change them less often than expected, and that you may not need to turn on so many sources of light to achieve the desired amount of visibility in a room.

The convenient thing about energy-efficient light bulbs is you can install them gradually. It may be ideal to only switch them out in one or two places in your home at first, then see how you like them before taking a more all-encompassing approach.

Recycle Whenever Possible

Some people who recycle the items they discard think it’s sufficient to merely separate the items based on if they’re paper or plastic. Your community may have a single-stream recycling program, meaning you don’t have to separate anything as long as you verify all the items in the bin are suitable for recycling. Often, though, you’ll need to categorize things more carefully, especially if your recycling center only accepts certain kinds of plastic. Become familiar with recycling symbols and research whether you can bring certain materials to the proper place for recycling.

Once you understand the codes on recyclable items, it’ll be easy for you and your household to get in the habit of recycling as many items as possible. Think about having a dedicated container for recyclables and checking materials immediately to determine if they can go in that container. Then, there’s no need to deal with the stuff later.

Consider Earth-Friendly Home Upgrades

Are you thinking about buying a new washing machine or redoing your bathroom soon? In those cases, investigate how you could accomplish those things while keeping an eco-conscious mindset. For example, a new plumbing installation might include a low-flow faucet or a toilet that uses less water than conventional kinds with every flush. When communicating with companies that are handling the setup of new appliances or other kinds of home upgrades, mention that you are aware of your environmental impact and want to reduce it as much as possible.

These suggestions let you keep the planet’s future in mind without feeling like you’re making lifestyle changes that are too substantial to stick with over a long period of time. By giving them a try, you’ll see that it’s not difficult to live comfortably and responsibly at the same time.