I am someone who is trying to reject and escape excessive consumerism and live more of a minimalistic life. I decided to do this for the planet as well as for myself. Excessive consumerism, I believe, is one of the biggest issues in the world right now and the worst part of it is that most people can’t see it.
After so many years of being trapped in this system, it all seems normal. Without a doubt, continual exposure to adverts and promotions is the culprit behind this. It’s making everyone buy things they don’t need. So many people work half the day, and then go and buy things they can’t even afford so they feel better about themselves.
It’s society’s trap but fortunately, you can escape it. All you need is to change the way you think and realize that spending all your fortune on material things will not make you any happier in the long term. In fact, it will have the opposite effect.
Here are my top reasons to escape excessive consumerism.
01. More Time
This might come as a surprise, but by leaving the world of consumerism, you free up a lot of your time. You stop browsing through online stores to find the perfect outfit. You also go shopping less often. How many times have you gone out to buy one thing, but ended up returning with a bagful of items? Don’t worry, it’s not just you. Everyone does it.
With this new lifestyle, that will stop. Obviously, you can still go shopping but my point is you won’t waste hours and hours every week going from store to store. Spend your time and money on the important things, on what you really love. Not what society is telling you to love. You could use it for travel, art classes or another hobby. You could even use it to start a small online business.
02. More Eco-Friendly
When you leave the extreme consumerist lifestyle you effectively become more environmentally friendly. Consumerism is what is driving climate change and nearly every other environmental problem. If, as a population, we bought less, fewer forests would be cut down, carbon dioxide emissions would be lower and ecosystems wouldn’t be on the brink of collapse.
Our greed is the single biggest reason why the planet is suffering. We are using up all of the earth’s resources, faster than it could ever replenish, simply to make things that we don’t even need. It sounds like a broken system to me.
So, escape consumerism for the sake of the planet. It is after all the driver of most of our global challenges including climate change, air pollution, ocean plastic pollution and it is also causing workers to be unfairly treated and underpaid.
Also Read: 10 Important Reasons To Care About The Environment
03. Less Debt
When you start consuming and buying less, you will spend less money.
There are millions of people out there who are working at a job they hate just so they can earn more money to buy a bigger house, a better car, more clothes, and so on. Even when that promotion or raise comes in, the debt doesn’t go away. Because now it’s time to buy an even bigger house and the latest car model.
This is not happiness. If you continue leaving like this, you will always feel empty. Happiness comes from the inside, not from materials objects which can be replaced.
04. Less Pressure To Update
It’s so freeing. You don’t need to update all your stuff. Nor do you feel the need to update them. You become happy with what you already have and don’t even think about buying the new iPhone or that new designer bag that came out last month.
Related: What is Slow Fashion? And How Do I Get Started?
05. Become Less Materialistic
From a young age, we see everyone buying new things. We soon become brainwashed by this ideology of ‘we need more’ and as children, we start asking for toys and more presents.
As we grow older, that connection with material objects deepens to a point where our feelings are affected by stuff. We are unhappy if we still have an old phone and feel like a lesser person because we can’t afford a new shiny car.
This is the reason why the minimalist lifestyle has become so popular. Some people also refer to it as simple living. They are getting sick of this mentality and want to escape from it. Life should not be about how much stuff you have. It really should be about experiences and the people around you. That’s where you should look for happiness. Happiness can’t be bought on Amazon.
06. Less Stress
Consumerism is most likely ruining your life and you are probably completely obvious to it. Most people are. Excessive consumerism is stressful but that’s exactly why you need to escape it. The world as a whole is stressed out and tired. It’s no surprise though. Very few people look after themselves properly.
It’s not only about eating healthy and exercising. It’s about taking care of your mind too. Consumerism is constantly stimulating your brain and it never stops. When was the last time you took a breath and slowed down? Probably a very long time ago. Half the population is working 24/7 so they can earn as much money as possible and the other half is spending money they don’t have. It’s a never-ending chase and in the end, no one wins. So don’t waste your time chasing unimportant things because you will regret it.
07. Can’t Be Manipulated
You might be a bit confused about this one. Let me explain. As soon as you escape excessive consumerism, adverts, and people and can’t persuade you and manipulate you to buy something. You almost start laughing at them and wonder how they used to persuade you to spend more money in the first place. As soon as you find intrinsic happiness, nothing can persuade you to buy new, useless stuff because you know that they can’t make you any happier.
I can’t lie, it’s a nice feeling. Although you do become extra aware of how many adverts there are around us.
Let’s be real. Living without this pressure and with less debt makes you a happier person. A lot of your worries vanish and you have the time and money and do what you want. You suddenly stop feeling jealous about others getting new stuff. Escape consumerism for your own well-being. Learn to find happiness without buying new things. Slow down in this modern world.
09. Learn To Be Grateful
When you leave the world of excessive consumerism, you suddenly become a different person with a brand new perspective of life. You no longer have the urge to buy new things to look cool and fancy. You become happy with the possessions you have. Being grateful is something that modern society lacks since we are so used to always looking for more.
For most, it won’t be easy or natural to escape excessive consumerism. It isn’t just about stopping to buy things. It’s about changing your mindset and being happy with what you have. It sounds simple but it’s something that society is not used to.
Advertisements have changed the way we think and live but hopefully, after reading this you will consider changing your lifestyle. It’s something worth trying out. You won’t regret it. I’ve done it and I’ve never looked back.
Image from Unsplash