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Twelve months of going green - January

January is full of resolutions that rarely see the light of February. One of those resolutions is often being more "green". If you can't expect yourself to go from couch potato to marathon runner in four weeks, how can you expect yourself to go shrink you eco-footprint in one day? This is 12 easy to do steps, broken down by the month. By the time 2015 rolls around, you'll find yourself living a much more ecologically friendly lifestyle with minimal pain and stress.

January's goal may sound big when you read it and you instantly think "What? That's so much to do at one time!" Well, relax, this doesn't happen in one session either.

January = Purge. This can be done a couple of ways. You can pick one thing to work on such as closets, or the kitchen, or book shelves. Or you can focus on one room each week: living room, kitchen, bathroom. The idea is simple. Every time you enter that space, you find something you don't use or need and get rid of it. You can put it in a donate box. You can give the items to select friends. You can sell it. You can make art of it. Whatever. Do you have 4 plain black leather belts and 2 or 3 of them go unused? Pass them on.

Another way to do this one is the "one in, one out" method. Nothing new comes into your space without clearing out something that you don't use or want. New shoes? Get rid of those boots you bought on a whim that pinch and have zero traction. Yeah, they are pretty, but don't need them.

You aren't looking for zen minimalist perfection, you are just looking for space. Eventually you will get to the point where it will be second nature to purge the unnecessary and you will find yourself surrounded only by the things you really use and truly love.