Coming Clean on Consumption

By April 14, 2008 culture No Comments

It’s April 14: two weeks into a proposed “nonconsumption month.” Back when I first posted about this press to slow my consumerism mentality, I made mention that I already had several events and commitments in the month that would derail this lofty ideal. I wanted to be committed to this cleansing without being legalistic. I fear I’ve only accomplished the latter half of that . . .

However, not all is lost! Progress has been made in the realm of my choices, even though those choices have resulted in the purchase of several things. Prior to this proposal, I would have shopped with the simple goal of finding and obtaining the item, with little concern about the cost. With these “necessary” purchases over the past two weeks, my goal has been to spend as little as possible for items that would make me equally as happy as the more expensive version. Reason has become a new filter for purchase behavior.

Another plus is that I truly am sick of shopping. (Not sure how long that will last, but it is true right now!) The catalyst for this unusual state is my search for a formal dress for the American Red Cross Evening of the Stars fund-raising event. The dress hunt has been ridiculous. Besides the fact that I am indecisive, I am also picky—neither of these are helpful when it comes to choosing a dress for a special event. Over the course of the last two months, I think I have purchased and returned seven dresses. I have spent hours looking for and trying on dresses, plus the time to return them. I found several dresses I loved, but the prices gave me hives. And I found several dresses for a great price, but the styles just were not “me.” Just last week I found a dress that was solid on both accounts. I am relieved to have my dress; but I am even more relieved to be done with the process. And I feel good that I searched high and low for a good price to make good use of the money.

My desire to consume less remains: I want my heart to be detached from the world’s call to own and possess. Not sure how long it will take for my heart to be weaned, but I think it’s worth the effort.

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