The question I keep asking myself as I sort through my mountain of possessions is: Why did I ever buy all this stuff in the first place? Only when we go through everything we own all at once do we realize how many things we buy that we don’t really need, even if it seemed like we needed them at the time.
I’ve noticed somewhat of a trend. A lot of the things I have that we rarely used, or rather useless, were impulse buys. I’m sure everyone has caved to impulse buys. You see a cute little figurine, or a beautiful soap holder which also happens to be inexpensive. Impulse buys can also pertain to a certain hobby, such as reading. I’m sure we’ve all walked into a bookstore and bought a book that seemed really cool at the time, only to have it collect dust on a shelf. We never really stop to ask: If I really want to read this book, couldn’t I get it from the library? Or: Do I even need a soap holder? Doesn’t my sink have a built-in dip where the soap goes anyways? The point is, impulse buys often lead up to a collection of unnecessary items. So how can we avoid them? I think it’s pretty simple. If you see something you like wait until the next day. If you still really want it enough to make the effort of going back to the store to get it then it is probably something you could actually use.
Buying Office Supplies At Thrift Stores
I have a ridiculous amount of office supplies left over from when I was in school, more than I could ever use. As I back them into boxes to be donated, I am kicking myself for never thinking of going to a thrift store to shop for school supplies. Each binder I bought was at least $5… and now I’m giving them away to be resold for probably $1 if not less. I could have saved so much money, so now I’m passing on the thought in the hopes that somebody else who still needs school/office supplies will think to look for them at a thrift store.
There is a reason reduce comes first in “reduce, reuse, recycle”, yet I feel like when we learned about it in school they mostly focused on recycle. As I head to donations with 5 whole boxes filled with things, and many more to come, I am planning to lead a less wasteful life in the future.