The Green Way to Acquire ‘New’ Things

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Image by asenat29 / Creative Commons

Now that Christmas is over and many people have completed their inventory of the gifts and presents they received, it is time to discuss returns. If you are like most people you have probably already returned some of those gifts you either have no use for or don’t really want. However, there are other ways to “return” your gifts too.

Well, I guess technically I shouldn’t say return. Let me go over a smart green way to exchange those presents you don’t really want or need: trade them. Trade them with someone who has something you want, or trade them with someone who wants something you have.

It is kind of like the gift exchanges done in many businesses and companies these days, where each person gets to pick a wrapped gift, then once you open it you can either choose to keep the gift or take someone else’s unwrapped gift and give them yours.

Image by waferboard / Creative Commons

Whether you trade with friends, family, neighbors or via a trading website like Craigslist or any of these barter sites, doesn’t matter. What matters is that you find a way to breathe new life into an item that would otherwise be discarded or left unused.

Having a garage sale or taking your items to a consignment store could work as well, but in many cases it takes a lot more effort than you may want to invest. Of course anything is better than simply throwing the gift away.

Image by Bob n’ Renee / Creative Commons

If you are determined you don’t want the gift, and that you don’t know of anyone else who does, why not donate it? It is one less thing that goes into the local landfill and one more thing that is available for someone else to use and enjoy.

After the holidays, and throughout the entire year, anytime you want to acquire something ‘new’, take a few minutes and find out if there is anything you can trade. It is a green and relatively simple way to get the things you want and get rid of the things you don’t, without anything making its way to the landfill. Sounds like a win-win to me!

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