We all know that adulthood is basically remembering to pack your lunch, separate the recycling properly and turn the lights off when you leave the house, until you reach retirement.
But striving to run a more efficient home – one that’s tight on energy consumption, eliminates food waste and in which the keys are somewhere you can always find them – doesn’t need to be so hard.
Ben Edwards, a confidence coach who specialises in productivity and organisation, tells HuffPost UK that technology is a great tool in helping to relieve stress.
“Anything that helps to alleviate day-to-day worries, such as remembering that you’ve left the oven on after you’ve rushed out to a meeting, is well worth doing,” Edwards says. “This will allow you to focus on the important tasks at hand, and dedicate more of your time to things that really matter - like your children or partner. Use tech to your advantage and be smart with your devices.”
Juliet Landau-Pope is a professional organiser and the author of What’s Your Excuse For Not Being More Productive. She recommends starting the week with a to-do list, and every morning circling the most important item on it, to tackle first.
“Learning to plan and prioritise are key to organising,” she tells HuffPost UK. “Save time and effort by streamlining systems and creating routines that work for you and your household. The most effective systems are the simplest.”
Here are the experts’ top tips for maximising efficiency in your home.
Cost up your carbon
With a gazillion electronics in your home, calculating how much carbon everything is going through isn’t so easy. The Energy Cost Calculator app helps you to understand just how much energy your phone charger, microwave, TV or other appliances are using, in order to give you a carbon figure per device, annually. One hell of a motivator to cut down.
Track your energy use
E.ON See is an exclusive customer online portal that makes tracking your energy use – and seeing where you can make efficiencies – super easy. You can access your energy use stats (in easy-to-read graphs, and in pounds and pence) and see where you’re using too much.
Fill in all of your home’s details for extra accurate data and access loads of energy-saving tips and tricks (just one of the benefits of being an E.ON Energy customer.) Find out more about the latest tariff offers and enjoy seeing how much energy you’re using. If you’re an E.ON Energy customer already, you can benefit from E.ON See by logging into your account.
Master meal plans
Meal planning and food shopping is pretty boring. But there are plenty of apps to help you cut down on the time you spend at it.
Pepperplate is an app that helps you compile and organise your recipe collection, create tailored meal plans, and generate shopping lists. Recipes can be imported from your go-to food sites by pasting their URL, and then can be used to create interactive shopping lists, so you can keep track of what you’ve bought.
Nail the chore list
Taskify’s beauty lies in its ability to streamline all your chores, jobs and general admin – meaning no balls dropped and a day that you’ve got a firm handle on.
Lost and found
Who doesn’t spend at least five minutes every day hunting for their keys? With Tile, a small, portable bluetooth tracker, you’ll never waste time looking for them again. Simply pair the tile, which attaches to your keyring, with the associated app on your phone, and you’ll be alerted as to exactly where your keys are.
Make it a game
Because convincing everyone in your household to go green isn’t easy. The Joulebug app lets you track your own, personal goals (cycling to work, eating local produce), as well as joining in with challenges with your family, friends or neighbourhood.