Archive for the ‘Ways to Go Green’ Category

Top Three Tips & Tools for Work-at-Home Success

October 5, 2011
Jodie Watson

Jodie Watson

Did you know that according to a recent survey, 55% of small business employees work from a home office? For many small companies, brick and mortar offices are a thing of the past since technology has paved the way for employees to work from a home office.  Also, due to job uncertainty, downsizing and layoffs, Americans are launching part-time and full-time businesses on a shoestring from their basements, garages, spare bedrooms and kitchen tables.  In fact, the number of U.S. households that operate a full or part-time home-based business exceeds 12 percent according to the Small Business Administration and Home Business Magazine reports that 50% of households in the United States are involved in a home-based business.

TLC Network’s Jodie Watson knows the essentials for how to succeed in a work-at-home environment. Not only does she regularly help entrepreneurs organize their home businesses on Real Simple, Real Life, but she has her own home based business. Jodie has a checklist for success.

#1:  Start with Technology. Technology is the lifeline in any business and you want to evaluate what you already have and what you need.  The essentials are a phone, computer and internet access. First, loose the landline since cell phones are mini-offices that handle everything from basic phone calls to emails.  If you don’t already have a computer, a laptop will save space and energy.  And bundle your wireless services like internet and cell phone together to save. 

Another bundled value is a printer that does five jobs in one. The Epson Work Force Pro is not only the World’s Fastest automatic two-sided printer that saves you 50% on paper, but it copies, prints, faxes and scans. Also, it has extra large ink cartridges so you won’t run out of ink in the middle of a work day and with the Epson connect feature, you can print email, photos, and documents directly to a printer from anywhere in the world.

#2:  Treat Your Business Like a Business.  First, you need the right mindset and that’s to treat your business like a business starting with keeping regular business hours so clients can rely on you.  One of the biggest challenges for a home office is getting your work station off the dining room table since you can increase your productivity with a defined work space. You know your local office supply store has items that will help you set up a nice workspace and keep you organized like the ones here from Office Depot. 

Start with a desk like this one from the RealSpace Magellan collection that looks very stylish in your home or office

Not only does it have a large work space, but also a lot of storage to keep you organized.

Regardless of where you work, most people spend eight hours of their day sitting at a desk so look for a chair that has a lumbar feature to help support your lower back. The Thomasville Style@Work collection is accredited by the American Chiropractic Association and is a luxury office chair, but at an affordable price point.  

There are four chairs in the collection that easy to assemble including the Tavelle.  You’ll maximize your productivity with an organized work space.

#3:  Use Common Sense When It Comes to Managing Business Expenses.  Go green and you will help the environment while cutting costs.  Look into smaller computers (i.e. laptops), electrical outlets, and phone chargers that save energy. Don’t forget to turn off lights and unplug chargers when you are not using them, and recycle paper.

Join reward programs and shop the sales at office supply stores like Office Depot that were designed with the home business owner in mind.  You can save a lot money when setting up your home office if you do a little research.

Don’t think you have to hire a staff in order to run your business effectively.  Outsource what you need to as you need it.  You can drive growth entirely through contract labor if it makes sense.

Invest for growth. A home based business reduces overhead, but you still need to put money into the business to keep it thriving. And that’s true no matter where your business is based. 

Jodie Watson is an organizational expert and the Founder and President of Supreme Organization.  Jodie can been seen regularly on Real Simple, Real Life, a lifestyle make-over show on the TLC Network where she helps women identify their day-to-day organizational challenges and offers realistic solutions that save them time, clear the chaos, and make their lives less stressful and more manageable.  After working in the entertainment industry for many years including Joan & Melissa River’s Rugby Productions, she launched Supreme Organization in 2005.  Jodie is a member of the National Association of Organizers (NAPO), Vice President of the Los Angeles Chapter of NAPO, and has a roster of celebrity clients.


2010 40th Anniversary of Earth Day

December 8, 2010

April 2010:

Tara Aronson, Lifestyle Expert

Tara Aronson’s Ways to Go Green & Save “Green” & Save Our Ailing Planet.  It’s the 40th anniversary of Earth Day in 2010 and our world is in greater peril than ever, but there is also unprecedented opportunity to build a new future.  Earth Day 40 is a pivotal opportunity for everyone in America, along with corporations, and governments to join together to create a global green economy. Whether you’re trying to save money or trying to save the planet, going green makes a lot of economic and environmental sense. There are so many ways to save energy, make environmental decisions in every day activities and even when you travel. It’s so easy to be green. All it takes is making simple changes in your home, office and daily habits. There are hundreds of ways to go “green” and save the “green” and Lifestyle Expert, Tara Aronson, is on a mission to make the environment better NOW and here are some of her green ideas, not just for Earth Day, but for every day.

Give your home a green makeover.
Many people don’t realize how easy and inexpensive it can be to give your home a simple green makeover.  Not only will it help save the planet, it will save you money.

  • Unplug appliances you’re not using and save up to 26% off your total electric bill.
  • Replace your standard light bulbs with energy saving CFLs and save about $30 or more in electricity costs per bulb over its lifetime since CFLs use 75 percent less energy and last up to 10 times longer.
  • Conserving water by taking a shorter shower and only doing a wash when you have a full load will reduce your water bill measurably.
  • Carpool to work. If you carpool, you can save around $780 a year!  You may be able to find people looking to carpool on Craigslist or in your local paper.

You know, you can find more of these “40 Days of Earth-Friendly Living” tips online from The Elmer’s Glue Crew Recycling Program. It’s a 40-days, 40-ways calendar that offers an eco-friendly tip or idea each day, such as bike to work or school or turn off the lights. It’s a great way toget your family involved. You can download the calendar at  The 40 Days calendar is just one way the company helps teachers and parents educate children about taking care of the environment. The program also includes a national classroom drive to collect and recycle millions of empty glue bottles and sticks each school year.  Last year, Elmer’s Glue Crew recycled 2 million empty glue bottles and glue sticks, and program participation reached 1.2 million students, 16,000 teachers and 83,000 classrooms.  Again, you can find out more at

Buy Products from Companies that Practice Earth Friendly Choices.
One of the ways to really make a difference with our environment is to make “green” choices when you shop.  This means supporting companies that make “Earth Friendly” choices.

Green Giant vegetables is committed to reducing their carbon footprint. Last year, they replaced their packaging with unbleached recycled paper board reducing their green house emission by approximately 80%.  This also saves around 54,000 trees annually.  Also, for almost 80 years Niblets corn is vacuum packed so the same amount of corn is in this smaller 11-ounce can as in this 15-ounce cans. This uses less water, less metal and less fuel in shipping the product.  This Earth Day, they announced a program with The Nature Conservancy and are giving $200,000 to encourage and promote greener farming practices in and around their growing region.  You can learn more or make a donation to The Nature Conservancy at

You know there are so many companies that understand the importance of being “green” and they’re initiating great earth friendly programs.  Here’s a company that’s really making a difference.

We’ve all heard of Underwriters Laboratories – they have been a pioneer in safety standards for more than 115 years. You know that “UL in a circle” on the back of products: did you know that the average home has more than 125 products with the UL Mark on it? That Mark signifies that the product has been tested and meets rigorous safety requirements.  Underwriters Laboratories also focus on environmental concerns where Moms have a chance to win an eco-friendly Imagination Playground designed to encourage creativity and sensory play critical to a child’s development for their own neighborhood or community center. This is all part of a “Save Play” program that encourages Moms to pledge support for local play areas through a Playspace Finder – a playground locator available at where they can also enter to win that Imagination Playground.

Don’t forget some non-traditional ways to make your home a greener place.
There are so many ways that you can make green choices in your every day life and they are so simple.  Here are just a few.

  • Skip the bottled water. Use a water filter to purify tap water instead of buying bottled water. Not only is bottled water expensive, but generates large amounts of container waste.
  • Make your own cleaning supplies. This is another earth friendly money saver that also eliminates waste on packaging of cleaners and that is to make your own earth friendly cleaning supplies.  All you need is a few simple ingredients like baking soda, vinegar, bleach and lemon.
  • Find new uses for old things. Before you toss something in the trash, consider how you might reuse it. An old tissue box is a great way to store plastic bags.
  • Make earth friendly choices when you travel. Hotels and cruise ships are becoming increasingly aware of being more eco-friendly.  One very simple way to conserve water when you travel is to not have your sheets or towels every day on extended stays at a hotel or while you’re on a cruise.  More tips on earth friendly travel ideas are at

Remember, it is essential to teach your kids about every day ways to protect the planet, after all – they’re inheriting it from us.