One of my goals for 2019 was to be a more conscious consumer. After reading Marie Kondo’s book late last year, I wanted to approach my shopping habits from a different perspective. To only own things that makes you happy sounds wonderful. And not only that, by shopping less you’re actually being much kinder to the planet and its resources.
However, it’s much harder than anticipated to change a mindset ingrained after so many years of being surrounded by marketing campaigns and consumerism culture. I would find myself wanting to impulsively buy so many things that I didn’t really need but that were cute or cheap.
It’s still a work in progress, and I’m starting to think it’s always going to be one, but here are some strategies I’m taking to help me consume less:
- Research what brands I consume beforehand and choose always the more ethical/environment friendly brand I can
- I am only allowed to buy a piece of clothing if I take one out of my closet and donate it/sell it/pass it on to someone else who I know will enjoy it
- Choose quality pieces over cheap quantity: this not only applies to fashion (I used to buy a lot from F21) but also to jewelry (finer materials last much longer and so I don’t need to keep buying loads of rings/necklaces because the ones I had were tarnished)
- Before I buy anything I try to be honest with myself and ask if I really need it, if I see myself wearing/using it a lot, if I think it’ll spark joy in the long term and not just in the now
Finally, what has helped me the most came from a quote I saw on Pinterest:
Take care of what you already have.
I don’t know why this quote affected me this much, but I really liked it and started trying to live by it. If you take proper care of what you already have, it’ll last you so much longer. In doing that, you’re surrounding yourself with possessions you love and that have a history with you, while saving money and the environment. Isn’t it neat?
It’s a journey, and a long one, but I’m committed to it and to improve every day. If you have any other tips/strategies to be a more conscious consumer, please let me know!
Until next time,