No, Don’t Buy More Stuff

2059871669_1ffefb4781_bDo you ever get that feeling, like, I want to buy something… Even as a minimalist I sometimes get a feeling like this.

Last week I made the decision to change my Cable TV / Internet Provider from Dish Network to Comcast Xfinity. I was able to lock in on a 2 year package that will save me almost $40.00 per month while providing faster internet and a wide range of channels that we would actually watch. Anyway, in doing this I made the decision to purchase my own Cable Internet Box with built in wireless router that would save me an additional $10.00 per month on rental fee’s.

Just making that single purchase through seemed to stir something inside me to buy more stuff. The problem is that there is nothing I want or need to buy. Still I find myself looking at ads on the internet. Why is this? It is almost like I have scored an incredible deal on this whole home entertainment/communications switch over and all of a sudden I am the King of finding a good deal and somewhere in the recesses of my brain I want another score.

No worries though as I haven’t made another purchase and am glad I caught myself before I starting buying more shit that I don’t need. It makes me wonder about past habits and some of the crap I allowed to enter my home through this very act of allowing myself to feel some kind of thrill from buying stuff.
Blood Sugar- 111, Weight- 191.0

Distance- 2.18 miles
Time- 35:07
Calories- 242.9

After stepping up the weights on Tuesday I found myself needing a day off on Wednesday. Here I arrive on Thursday to embrace walking on the treadmill. I built up quite a sweat and really feel that I will benefit from the walk this morning. It does take time and patients to allow all of the mini steps in progress each day to finally allow the body to anticipate the next workout. For now I am still reluctantly pushing myself each day. Just a little bit more, just a little harder.

About SimpleLivingOver50

At 53 years old I am starting to realize how life changes both physically and emotionally. I strive for a life of simplicity. I am winning the battle with type II diabetes, created a plan to have all debt paid off in 4 years including the house, taking advantage of every opportunity to live life to it's fullest through adventures in nature, hiking, biking, loving and learning.
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19 Responses to No, Don’t Buy More Stuff

  1. jespidi says:

    I had that feeling many times. Sometimes I success, sometimes no…but I totally understand what you mean.

    Hellos from Norway! 🙂

  2. New Journey says:

    We can’t bring ourselves to pay for cable or tv…we use an antennae and we get all the major channels and PBS…anything else we want we just pull it up on the computer and plug it into the TV….it has saved up hundreds of dollars over the last 4 years….something in me told me I couldn’t live without TV…LOL I am still alive and doing fine….LOL glad you found a better deal…but I believe a decent antennae is the way to go….just my opinion…..kat

  3. I don’t do cable, as I watch my shows of choice on the net. We are raised and “programmed to be “good” consumers, so after all that it’s natural to want to spend. My budget and goals puts the breaks on fast.LOL. Just think of how it will feel to get ___ paid off and that will help.

  4. It’s hard to unlearn what we’ve learned throughout our lives, but it’s not impossible. Good for you on resisting an impulse buy. 🙂 I think minimalism is also about finding balance. I don’t believe most of us are trying become monks here…
    Some material possessions (ie; I wouldn’t be able to type this comment without some sort of electronic device) serve a good purpose and some don’t. If having cable will add value to your life, then I think that’s a positive thing for you! ^_^

  5. Bob Fenton says:

    I do have to ask – did you ask what the rate will be when the two years are up. If it is like here, you could be spending $50 to $90 more per month.

    I have learned over the years that less is more and the more is often less as it costs 2X or 3X more than you need to spend. Advertising is my least favorite of things on any TV or Internet as I refuse to support them.

  6. Layla says:

    Thanks for reminding me that I still need to look into switching my cable/internet. I can’t save as much as you can, as prices are already quite low here compared to you. But even saving 7 euro’s a month for something I don’t use that much is a save worth doing.
    If I feel that I want to buy something I usually head out to the supermarket and buy some fruit, for some reason spending 2 euro’s is enough to calm down the ‘buy it, buy it now’-animal inside of me.

  7. Life is full of temptations but you managed to resist for now. Very inspiring.

    I cut the cord aka canceled cable TV and only have internet (of course) and a cell phone. The last one is a prepaid LG and costs around $15/mo.

  8. Jess says:

    I think you worded it perfectly – it’s that “King of scoring a good deal” mentality that’s the troublemaker, like an addict chasing the next high. The funny thing is that even when you go the opposite, and try to be frugal as you can be, that can also be counterproductive as we become competitive with ourselves and want to be the “King of being frugal” which starts to cross the line into being cheap. So really… it’s something even deeper, about our egos or attachments or identities. Ooo this is interesting but this could get really deep and existential 😛 I will stop here. Good on you for recognising the temptation!

    • Oh no Jess, please go on. There is something about being a part of this consumer driven society that keeps us wanting for more of anything.

      • Jess says:

        Thanks for inviting me to say more… I’ve got a lot of jumbled thoughts and feelings around this whole topic that intuitively make sense for me, and I hope that I can articulate it well enough 🙂

        Western culture in developed countries have such an abundance that it encourages us to seek happiness externally. We believe we can alleviate any feelings we have (sadness, loneliness, boredom, lack of purpose) with all these external things (purchasing things, eating, thrill seeking activities).

        Don’t get me wrong – yes we should enjoy our lives, and things and experiences do give us joy. But we have to recognise they are temporary. And while they give us momentary joy, they don’t always give us ‘meaning’.

        When we try and find meaning in the external happiness (“King of scoring a good deal”), then we have to keep doing it because it shapes our identity and gives us purpose. So there’s an attachment there to that identity (because without that identity, you would inherently feel there is something not fulfilling about mindlessly consuming).

        If we always seek happiness externally, then we give up control of our happiness. We let the unpredictable environment and unattainable goal of obtaining everything to drive how we feel. If we don’t recognise this behaviour then we continue feeling empty and trying to seek external happiness in many different ways to fill the void.

        When we’re faced with death, that’s when we realise that none of those things mattered. People give away all their possessions. People wish they spent more time with their loved ones. People wish they had more experiences and emotional connections.

        I think on some level we all get this. When someone says these things, it’s something you nod along to and think ‘oh yeah’. But we also get defensive because it’s hard to do our internal work, change or think of how to live differently. And when we live differently, there’s a label isn’t there? After all that I’ve said, I still cling to the identity of being a “minimalist” and I definitely have my “Queen of how frugal can I get” moments. But hopefully more days than not, the minimalist values are less about comparing what I don’t own and feeling justified, but allowing me to open up space for the things that do matter.

        Sorry for the essay! You’ve obviously caught me in a very moment 🙂 What do you think about this?

      • I agree with you whole heartedly and you have expressed it very clearly. I have been caught up on that rollercoaster so many times in my life. It is so easy to capture that high of tearing down the track at top speed only to find yourself at the bottom with the longing to rise back up to find another moment like it. You are absolutely right when you say it is external. I sat one day and thought about all of the good things I have experienced throughout my life and realized that most fond memories occurred outside within the confounds of nature. I couldn’t remember what I was wearing or the car I drove, but what I do remember is the people I spent the time with. I learned that day what it really was that brought me joy.
        Acquiring things now means very little to me and although I still get those feelings of purchasing something just to find a thrill or fill void it is quickly changed to thoughts about what really matter to me.

  9. camcoogan says:

    Definitely been there, done that! Glad to know I am not alone. 🙂

  10. Ashley says:

    Go for you for noticing and avoiding returning to past habits! That’s a great start in the right direction!

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