There’s strength in numbers, so it’s important to get as many people in your life on board with recycling as possible. But, how can you convince people who aren’t sold on recycling to do it anyways? Here are some tips to help you change these people’s minds:

Explain the impact.

People often think, “I’m just one person. Why does it matter whether I recycle or not? I can’t make a difference on my own.” It’s up to you to prove these nay-sayers wrong by providing facts like these:

  • Each year, the average person in the U.S. uses seven trees in paper, wood and other products. Think of the impact this person would have if he or she chose to recycle these products.
  • Recycling one aluminum can will save enough energy to power a TV for up to three hours.
  • Recycling one plastic bottle will save enough energy to power a 60-watt light bulb for up to three hours.

These facts show how it’s completely possible for one person to make a difference.

Make it easy.

After you talk to your loved ones about the impact they can make on the world by recycling, help them get started. Don’t rely on your loved ones to go out and get a recycling bin or look into what days recycling is picked up in their neighborhood. Instead, do the work for them. Put a bin in their house and send a friendly text message the night before recycling will be picked up in their neighborhood to remind them to put their bin by the curb.

You should also look up local recycling guidelines together. Are there any household items that the local recycling center does not accept? Are there drop-off locations for items that are hard to recycle such as electronics? Collect as much information as possible so your loved ones know how to get started on their own. 

Put together a helpful guide.

In the beginning, it may be difficult for your loved ones to remember what should be put in the recycling bin and what should go in the garbage. Help them learn which items in their home can be recycled by creating a helpful guide. Many people get confused as to which plastics are recyclable, so your guide should definitely include this information. For example, plastic water or soda bottles can be tossed into your recycling bin, but plastic bags from the grocery store cannot. These bags should be reused in other ways since they cannot be recycled.

Lead by example.

If you want people to take your advice, then you have to be sure you lead by example at all times. Show your friends and family members how easy it is for you to recycle and how it doesn’t take up much of your time. The recycling skeptics in your life may be convinced after seeing how little effort it requires.

Follow these tips and you will be able to instill a passion for recycling in your friends and family members!