Mindfully Buying: The Pledge

A few days ago I was sitting filling up another online clothes shopping basket I had no intention of checking out. Today I did two loads of washing and as I went to put it away in my over flowing cupboard I thought it was probably time for a sort out. Two fulls rubbish bags later and I feel so, so guilty about the waste. Of course everything is going to a charity shop, but why on earth did I ever think I needed all that stuff? It is bizarre to me. So many things I remember liking the idea of in the shop regardless of whether they suited me. So many mass produced, poorly produced, sweatshop produced things…it breaks my heart.

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So, in order to break the cycle of want rather than need, I thought I  ought to do a no spend challenge. I did no spend January at the start of the year and I really enjoyed it. It stopped me browsing and that in turn stopped me feeling the need to purchase. I felt a lot less stressed. When I started the month, I made a list of all the things I thought about buying. It was amazing how many things I felt I ‘needed’ in those first days. More often than not, if I didn’t write them down straight away, I couldn’t even remember what it was that I had wanted. As the month went on the thoughts of buying disappeared.

I have tried to be more mindful of my spending since, and I really have stopped buying clothes and tat in supermarkets (which where we live is pretty much my only shopping experience!). I have rediscovered Fat Face, whose clothes suit me and they seem to be the most ethical high street store I can come by. I would certainly be gutted if I learnt otherwise. But I really do need to do more, because I just don’t need any more.

The Pledge

My pledge is that I will not buy myself any clothes or shoes for twelve months. If, by some washing machine disaster, all my undies disintegrate, then I will obviously replace, but…twelve months…no clothes, no shoes, no bags or accessories, no jewellery, no makeup. I can’t actually see myself needing anything. After all, it would be really nice to give some of the things I’ve owned for over a decade a chance to wear out. Instead of mooching around the online shops, perhaps I’ll find some more productive things to do with my time. I don’t need any more clothes and I’m certainly not going on a spree before I start my twelve months. They’ve started the day I started this blog post…the 13th August 2018. I did buy two things in the sales a couple of months ago that are tucked away for Francis to give me at Christmas, which he will. Maybe I will appreciate them more.

I will let you know how I get on. Twelve months….I have no doubt there are plenty of people in this world who do it without a conscious thought…and some who do it because they have to. I didn’t grow up in a wasteful house. Mum and Dad were both very careful with money and instilled those values in me. But I do think times are different. Advertising is everywhere…particularly, for me, through Instagram. I’ve also gone from working to being pregnant to becoming a stay at home Mummy to being pregnant again and now having had all the children we plan to have. So there has been, rightly or wrongly, cause to have a few wardrobe refreshes over the last five years. Time to stop.

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