With 2019 in the books, it’s time to get those New Year’s resolutions running. If you’re having trouble sticking to your resolutions each time a new year rolls over, you might not be using the tried-and-tested method: building a habit.

They say that it takes 30 days to build a habit, and while results will vary from person to person, the truth is you need to do something every day so your body and mind remember it and it becomes automatic. What are the things you should be doing every day for the next month so for a cleaner, healthier home? Here’s what we recommend.

1. Take your Shoes Off – nothing introduces dirt, tar, pesticides, fungus, bacteria and other unwanted things from the outside into your home than your shoes. Shoes go around town and get into all sorts of dirty environments, and all that pollution will become particulates in your home. Prepare a shoe rack at the porch or entry to your home and take your shoes off there before getting in the house. Have home slippers ready and switch before you come in the home.

2. Wipe the Sink and Bathroom Dry – mold is a big challenge in any household, and they thrive in damp, moist places lie your kitchen or bathroom sink. There’s an effective counter, though: just scrub the sink with a solution of water and baking soda, then wipe it dry. You can also use a water-vinegar solution, but baking soda leaves no scent behind. You’ll want to keep these wet-prone surfaces dry, so do this every day and you will keep your kitchen and bathroom mold-free.

3. Open the Windows every Morning – this is an obvious tip but a lot of people might not be in the habit. As you sleep through the night the carbon dioxide in your bedroom builds up. Opening the windows first thing in the morning can help ventilate your room and get some fresh air in. Leaving the windows open all night isn’t always advisable, after all! Do the same for the rest of the house and let that clean air in.

4. Sweep the Floor and Wipe Dust off – nothing creates particulate matter in the home more than a steady build up of dust. If you let dust build up on the floors, tables, window sills and other surfaces you are just asking for PM10 and even PM2.5 particles to waft up into the air and get into your lungs. Make it a habit to wipe clean every surface daily and ensure no dust builds up.

5. Take a bath with a Helping of Essential Oils – when you wind down for a shower or a soak, apply some essential oils as a body wash. You can use tea tree oil, lemon oil, eucalyptus, pine needle or any similar oil, as these not only keep your skin smooth and supple, they have a 99.96% disinfection rate for airborne bacteria.

6. Water a Filter Plant every Day – we all know that plants turn carbon dioxide into oxygen, but some plants do a lot more than that. English ivy, the snake plant, peace lily and chrysanthemums (among other plants) can filter out toxic chemicals from the air like benzene, toluene and formaldehyde. The plants suck these out of the air and send them to the roots where they are broken down into harmless dirt.

7. Walk, Bike or Carpool when you Go Out – turning on the car in the garage releases a hefty helping of nitrogen dioxide, carbon monixide and sulfur dioxide into your home. Even the most isolated garage isn’t perfect, and anyone inside the house will know when the car is on, and it’s not because of the noise it makes! While sometimes using the car is unavoidable, make it a  habit to use greener commute methods whenever you can, and it’ll become an effortless habit in no time!

The New Year is a time for change, but you have to want and desire that change for yourself, and take the steps to make it stick. Forming these healthy habits will go a long way in changing your quality of life. May you and your family have a happy and healthy New Year!

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