Lesson #40: Take out the trash more than you think is necessary; make it a daily, even twice a day habit as you see fit. When you leave your apartment. Before you go to sleep. Half way through your shower, should you remember (sometimes I get carried away).
I know, it's no fun (even 50 Cent hates doing it), but I'm not exaggerating when I say that taking out the trash consistently, even obsessively, has saved me stress. It's also encouraged me to take note of my consumption and also improved my fairly pristine recycling habit, since I'm more conscious of what I'm tossing.
When I was newer to my apartment, there were days I waited or forgot to take it out for a couple days, maybe because I thought I had more important things to do than avoid getting bugs. Those were also the days that I've seen roaches and ants. Not a happy coincidence, but I was happy that the main cause was so utterly simple.
This hyper-cleanliness has ebbed in and out over the months, but the true treasure is that I find myself resting easier with the faint smell of bleach softly, delicately burning my nostrils.
After all, New York is already populated enough with inconsiderate vermin, and then there are the insects.