Creating a Sustainable Workspace by Recycling Office Items
Feels like your workspace is getting too cluttered because of excess stuff and overflowing files in your office cabinet? Do you produce a huge amount of waste in your workplace on a day-to-day basis? It’s time to take a closer look at the items you have in your space and find new ways to lengthen their lifespan and put them to better use.
Not sure where to start? Here we’ll share some of the top items you can recycle at work so you can reduce the waste you create daily.
Check out the top office items you can recycle
Start with the most common items that you use at work.
Extend the lifespan of paper
We’re in the digital era, but so many workplaces today still use a huge amount of paper for printing and notes. How do you approach this?
If you can’t avoid using paper, make sure you extend their lifespan by:
- Printing on both sides of the paper
- If you print on one side only, use the other side for taking down notes
- Shred paper and put them to good use: use them when packing fragile items, add them to your compost or mulch (do not use colored paper for this), or use them to create cushions and pads
Return toner cartridges
Most establishments that offer printing supplies often accept empty cartridges and reuse them to create new ones. Some establishments even buy them back. Because of this, there is no reason to discard and throw away empty cartridges—taking them to these establishments will not only save the environment but may also earn you a few bucks.
Paper clips, staple wires, and small trinkets and accessories
Many of these items find their way into the wastebasket even if they’re not yet damaged, simply because they have no proper place in your desk. The first step is to have a space for them, a holder for these accessories, somewhere you can put them back when you find them lying around somewhere.
Used staple wires don’t need to be taken separately from paper—their small size makes it okay for them to get included in recycled paper. Most paper clips can be reused, and damaged ones can be used in arts and crafts or, if in bulk, can be taken in recycling centers, treated similar to scrap metal. Meanwhile, most other trinkets can be used in other ways—i.e. large clips can be used to hold small phone chargers.
Now that you have an idea which items you can start recycling in your workspace, how do you make this easy?
One simple yet helpful idea is to have a recycling bin, a place that can hold items for recycling while you haven’t gotten to them yet. The good thing about this is that you get two bin options for your used items—the trash bin and the recycling bin. Taking some time to consider whether an item can be placed in the recycling bin can go a long way.
If you’re in a shared office space, some people suggest having a shared bin where everyone can drop off items they no longer need and others can take them if they need these items. All those not taken can then be recycled after some time.
Transitioning to a sit-stand lifestyle using your old desk
If you’re looking to try a sit-stand lifestyle but you don’t want to let go of your old desk yet, you can also recycle the desk. What you can do is to use a desk converter to add an elevated space on your desk without letting the desk go. A converter is designed to work similar to a standing desk, and all you have to do is to place it on top of your old desk.
So, are you ready to create a sustainable, waste-free workspace? You can start with the simple tips we outlined above and get into a recycling lifestyle. It has long-term benefits not only for your pocket but also for your overall wellbeing. Happy recycling!
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