From Consumer to Minsumer

It’s not terribly difficult to get rid of your junk and clutter, but how do you keep it from coming back? That’s one of the aspects of minimalism that I found to be pretty easy to follow.

For most of my life, I loved to shop for things whether I really needed them or not. If I had money to spend, I was spending it on clothes, movies, music, etc. As I got older I wised up a little, but mostly because I had less money to spend due to increasing life expenses.

I’ve heard some female friends refer to shopping as “retail therapy”, which it is, in a way. Going to a store and purchasing items that aren’t necessities is a great distraction from the problems in your life. It’s a great way to kill (waste) time, and a great way to waste money.

But buying things “just to buy” will not solve any problem in your life and more than likely the things you are buying are cluttering your home and causing you stress!

Look around your home. I’ll bet you can pick out five things around you that you don’t really want, but for some reason you can’t part with them. From our closets to attics, to garages stuffed to the rafters, we (as in all of us) have too much stuff.

Minsumerism

You can clear out all the clutter in your life, but if you don’t stop excessively shopping then you’ll never stop cleaning house.

So what is a “minsumer” anyway? It’s minimizing your shopping habits to the essentials, but also considering your purchases more carefully so that you buy quality items that last and were (hopefully) made by people that were paid a fair wage to make the items.

It’s changing your habits so you spend more time doing things you truly love, instead of the drive-shop-spend-store away cycle you’ve always done.

When you only consume, you stop creating. As people living modern lives, we have to shop at some point. Being a minsumer doesn’t mean you stop shopping completely.

We still need clothes. We still need food. We still want to be entertained.

When you choose to shop less, you can shop with more purpose. You need a pair of jeans? Go buy a pair of jeans. If not, then don’t. But don’t buy simply to buy- this is what fills your home with junk.

Don’t buy on impulse. You control exactly what you consume and spend your money on. I’m still working on fixing my spending habits, but so far I’ve eliminated my unnecessary spending.

Has this made you think about the way you shop for things? Let me know in the comments!

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