I fall into something like a trance when I’m in a store. All of a sudden, I can’t live without that orange bowl, the lime green vase, or another organizing gadget. Stores like Costco, Target, and Bed Bath & Beyond are my worst enemies. And, oh, those endless catalogs in the mail!
Do you struggle with similar habits? If you do, I have a great resource for you. It transformed the way I shop. It’s a film called “Minimalism.” But if that word makes you think of living in a white box with zero comforts, hear me out! The filmmakers, Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus, think of minimalism as this: deliberate spending. It isn’t about living without; it’s about making conscious decisions when purchasing something new.
These are some of the things they suggest asking yourself before you buy something:
- Do I need it?
- Do I already have it?
- Would it make me happier?
- Would it add value to my life?
- Where will it fit in my house?
- Will I be satisfied with it a week from now?
There’s a big difference between their questions and the reasons we typically buy something:
- Everyone else has it (so I should too).
- Surrounding myself with things makes me feel better.
- Shopping is my hobby.
- When I’m bored, I shop.
After I watched the film, I applied the idea of “deliberate spending” to some of the things I mentioned at the start. Here’s what I decided:
- I’m a single woman who doesn’t need a Costco membership.
- I will shop at Target online, so I won’t walk around the store.
- I will go to Bed Bath & Beyond when I’m in a hurry, so I won’t have time to wander around.
- I canceled catalogs by calling and getting my name removed from their lists.
And this was the result: I reduced my spending so much that I doubled my monthly savings!
If you struggle with clutter, here are three ways you can get inspired to change:
For more resources on how to declutter, check out these other articles on my tips page.