The interplay of cues, routines and rewards can change your energy consumption habits.
1. Identify your current energy consumption habits
Think about what your energy consumption is today and how you’re using energy. You should also look at the amount of energy you use. Perhaps you turn on the light in the front hall when you come home from work. Coming home is the cue for the routine of turning on the light. Perhaps you don’t turn it off again until you go to bed. Consider how much energy it takes to keep that light on for hours every night.
2. Determine the impact your habits are having
When you have inventoried how you're consuming energy and how much, you may take a look at the impact of your routine. It is critical to understand your energy expenses. How much time and money do you spend on these habits? For example, many houses waste energy by leaving lights on that they do not require.
When your behaviors are converted into dollars and cents, you may discover the desire to make adjustments that eliminate energy waste at home.
3. Eliminate obstacles and triggers
Identifying your signs and patterns is one thing; changing them is quite another.
In our example, you might wish to break the practice of turning off the hall light once you've settled into another room. To make it easy to shut off the light — and eliminate the impediment of inconvenience — you might rewire and place light switches by every entry and exit in your hall. A less expensive solution may be to just post a conspicuous reminder, similar to the workplace politeness signs you may be acquainted with at work. This makes it easy to recall.
Connecting the light to your smart home system is another option. You may set it to turn on when you go home and turn off a few minutes later. Home automation allows you to plan ahead of time the routine and the activity that will activate it.
4. Visualize the reward
Consider the benefit of modifying your energy usage practices. You may reduce your energy cost by limiting energy waste in your house. Going a step further, consider about the reward as well as strategies to preserve energy at home. Decide what you'll buy with the money you save to make the incentive more compelling.
5. Develop new energy consumption routines
You can't adjust your cues significantly to establish new patterns, but you can vary your incentives. Consider the cue. Consider the cue. Instead of putting up the heat, put on a sweater and think about what you could do with the money you save. The incentive of a warmer house is replaced with the reward of money saved to spend on anything else.
Those savings may also be used as a motivator to shift patterns in hot weather, allowing you to save energy in the summer by doing things like turning off your air conditioner when you're not at home.
When you keep your eye on the prize, you'll be on your way to developing habits that will lead to the benefits of lowering your energy use. And, by utilizing smart technology, such as a smart thermostat, you can automate the best habits for your house, saving you time and effort.
6. Don’t be hard on yourself
Habits are difficult to break. Changing your routine takes effort and thoughtfulness. It’s natural to go back to old ways of doing things, so don’t be too hard on yourself. Make your reward worth the effort and reward yourself regularly.
And if you slip back, adjust and stay focused on change. You can get inspiration with some of these energy savings tips. Despite your best intentions, it takes time and perseverance to create new routines.