My No-Buy Challenge // Final Update

No-buy challenge

Well friends, I sort of made it. Back in September I decided to embark on a no-buy challenge because I was just overwhelmed with the excess in my life. For me, it was about just trying to feel less like we needed stuff to fill some sort of void. Because in reality, we have more stuff than we can deal with. The stuff consumption was kind of becoming more like a pastime, and that’s a slippery slope. So I made a goal to not buy any unnecessary items for myself or the house until the end of the year. And here we are.

And I’m sure you’re wondering if I made it! Well, honestly: no. I slipped a few times. Once when I didn’t realize it, and a couple of times on purpose. But those times were few and far between, and I shockingly loved paring things down a little bit. I found myself surprised so many times by the fact that it actually took some pressure off of that feeling that you have to tackle every sale and get every new, latest thing. It made me take stock of what we have. It forced me to look through our closets and cabinets, and find things that I forgot were even there. I wore more of my clothes, I was more creative in using what we had to decorate our house, and yes, I actually saved a little extra money. But that’s not necessarily what it was about.

I think all in all, I’m just feeling overwhelmed by the wastefulness of the world. All of the packaging and the purchasing and things that come and go from our possession seem so… extra. And please understand, I’m a girl who LOVES extra. I love beautiful things, and beautiful spaces, and shopping, and all of that. But the no-buy challenge just has me reframing what that means to me and for our family. It might mean fewer, more meaningful purchases of items that will hopefully last a lifetime. It might mean shopping in places that use more eco-friendly packaging and shipping options. It might mean a lot of things. Right now I’m sorting through it all and trying to find balance.

So, if you came along with me on the challenge, what did you find out? Did you notice anything about yourself or your spending habits? Any big realizations? I’d love to know how it’s been going for those of you who stepped up to the challenge with me. Share in the comments if you’d like to get a conversation going! Thanks for following along and for your support during the challenge! xoxo

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  1. Without doing a no-buy challenge, I did start to reconsider my buying habits over the last years. It’s been so freeing, but also it’s making me worried. I love that I don’t feel like shopping or getting new stuff every time I feel stressed out or sad or to celebrate something. It gives me more mental space to enjoy the littles things a lot more. I don’t feel like I don’t measure up to the others, because I just don’t care about getting all the brand new things. On the other hand, as the distance between me and the consumerist system grows, so do my worries about the future (I know I am still part of the system, just a lot less than before and in a more conscious way). A native american said this and it really resonated with me: “We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.” I don’t have kids yet, but I am making efforts for them: it makes some boring or less comfortable decisions a bit easier for me.

    1. You put this all so well, and I feel like you’re in my head because I’ve had all of these exact thoughts before. It really makes you take stock of what we feel like we “need” but isn’t a necessity at all. And how very little you need to thrive in the world. xo