Spending Fast!

Okay, so since initially blogging about this, I've become keenly aware just how much I buy. That BlueQ bag I've always wanted that Sprouts now carries so I don't have to pay shipping? Done! Woot has a sale on yoga mats? I pick up 6 in case I ever want to do a class in my house.

I don't even think about it.

It's reflexive.

I have money in my account, so I buy what I want...without really giving it a second thought.

And yet. I can't help but be drawn to this idea of creating a condition where I have to exercise restraint as a discipline.  To try a different path than the consumerism that is so woven into my culture that I barely even perceive it unless I see it through the lens of someone who does without.

So, what might a spending fast look like for me?

The Rules of Engagement

  1. I would make no new purchases of things for myself, opting instead to repair the old, do without, or hit the thrift store to recycle something existing. 
  2. If needed to replace, socks, shoes, underwear, t-shirts, appliances, cosmetics or if I needed to read a  certain book, I would purchase new, but would add a 5-day waiting period so that the decisions were thoughtful.  
  3. I would not purchase new "things" as gifts opting instead for gift cards, experiences or handmade items depending on the person I was buying for. 
  4. I could deliberately choose simple food when eating out with friends, making it less about the food and more about the relationship.
  5. I would drop my waste-producing splurge items like Fiji water, Starbucks and **gasp**Bubble Tea.   
While many of the bloggers I am reading have tried this for a year, I think I'd impose a shorter time limit: six months.  That would mean that between now and July 9, the fast would be in place.

Even as I type this, I'm nervous.  Can I really do this? We are about to find out.


Melissa Pellegrin said...

I admire you for working on a "spending" fast. After the Christmas holidays, I need to cut back a bit myself. I look at what I already have in the apartment and concentrate on what I can do with it. For example, I was going to buy a diabetes pack to carry my supplies. Someone on FB suggested a makeup bag. I did not find anything on-line that I liked, then remembered the mesh bags I had purchased from Container store a few years ago to carry pens, pencils, calculators, and such.

I understand the waste created by the plastic bottles, but with bubble tea and Starbucks? I have seen where if you have your own thermos, Starbucks will wash it out and make your drink in it. That would allow you to continue to enjoy your Starbucks on special occasions without feeling guilt.

Cathy_H said...


Good catch on Starbucks. I wonder if I could do the same with Bubble Tea???

Melissa Pellegrin said...

Next time you go to Bubble Tea, I would ask about doing that and go from there. I am sure in this day, they would go for it.

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Maira Gall