Let’s face it, we’ve all done it before: you step under nice, hot running water, close your eyes and relax, and before you know it you’ve been in the shower for 20 minutes! Unfortunately our world has become so fast paced that many of us are not taking enough time to practice stress relief techniques on a regular basis, and sometimes we end up taking them at inappropriate times, and using inappropriate amounts of water. Fresh water is arguably the most precious resource we have on the planet, and also one of the most rapidly declining…perhaps also one of the most mismanaged. It’s easy to take fresh water for granted when it flows from our taps in an abundant, seemingly endless stream. It’s even heated for our convenience, should we desire it! Well, this is a luxury that is most definitely not available to everyone, in fact a huge percentage of the global population do not have access to sanitized fresh water in their homes( let alone heated!). Even some first world countries prone to drought must regulate the amount of water each household uses in the dry season. So how can we be more mindful of our fresh water consumption? Here are some tips!
- Buy a low flow shower head. These shower heads are readily available at commercial hardware stores, are easy to install and significantly reduce the flow of water from your shower.
- Time yourself in the shower. Are your showers lasting longer than 10 minutes? Challenge yourself by setting a goal of taking 5 minute showers( this is ample time to wash your hair and body!).
- Don’t let the water run idly! Once your hair is wet turn off the shower while you lather your hair with shampoo, then turn the shower on and rinse. Next step: conditioner. Turn the water off for the 1 to 3 minutes that you let your conditioner sit on your hair, then turn it on and rinse. Voila! You’ve just saved gallons of water.
- When washing your face, hands or brushing your teeth don’t leave the faucet running! This is a very common and very wasteful habit, and it’s honestly not hard to change. Just start reminding yourself that you don’t need running water for the scrubbing/brushing portion of the ritual, just the rinsing!
- It’s summer time, the temperatures are blazing..do you really need a hot shower? No! Turn down the water temperature and save more energy. It also feels wonderful to have a lukewarm/ cool shower in the summer, rather than a hot shower.
So there you have it, some simple solutions for minimizing your household water consumption! If every household in North America practiced these water saving techniques it would add up to millions of gallons of water saved annually. And remember: take time for yourself. Walk in nature, cook a leisurely meal and enjoy it with family and friends, and meditate daily..just NOT in the shower!
“Be the change you wish to see in the World” – Mahatma Ghandi