The Non-Consumer Experiment

Begins May 1, 2012 ends May 1, 2013

Several readers asked to know more about my Non-Consumer experiment yesterday. Here are some of the guidelines I will be following. I made them up my very own self, so if you see anything glaringly missing or contradictory, feel free to mention it.

* This is MY experiment, not my Hunky's and not my family's.  They are not expected to participate in any way (and honestly, they really aren't profligate spenders anyway).  This is really more about personal spending and personal experience. I also will be learning how to be a more responsible consumer as I go.

*This list of criteria may change and evolve. I have never done this before, but I know from experience that I seldom get things right the first time.

*I expect that at some point I will cave and purchase something. At some point need will trump will power or creativity. If that happens, it happens, and I will move on and continue the experiment.

These things are exempted from the experiment:

*Groceries/ cosmetics - for obvious reasons. What will take place is a much tighter menu plan and grocery budget. I also plan to utilize our local weekly farmers market as much as possible.  We aren't a high cosmetics need family, as in we don't use them excessively, and we don't use expensive brands, so other than giving them up completely, I'm not sure this area can really take any cuts.

*Intimate Items - Call me a poser, I am not wearing second hand under things.  I am actually pretty stocked in this area and hopefully won't need to buy anything new, but I reserve the right to responsibly purchase in this area if needed.

*Running shoes (clothes) - Gotta have em, and not hand me downs either. I expect to purchase at least one pair of shoes during the year period. It is less likely that I will have to purchase running wear but I may. I know how much *I* sweat in my own clothes so if I need something because wear and tear have disposed of an item I already utilize, I will replace it.  I don't anticipate this based on my current gear, but it may happen.

*Gifts - Not everyone is into creative gifts so I reserve the right to purchase occasionally appropriate gifts.  I will be looking into more fair trade and consumer responsible items for most gifts. I also reserve the right to receive gifts, especially for my BIRTHDAY.

*General Maintenance - Whether Doctors visits, car repairs or other needs, general maintenance may be required throughout the year.

*Goodwill - for clothing needs I will be relying on Goodwill to keep me adequately dressed. I will also be making many donations to this institution


Pattie said...

These guidelines seem reasonable, responsible, and really, an extension of what you have begun with the downsizing of belongings. (Notice that even though "really" is a superfluous word, it's alliterative!)

Leann Richardson said...

This is the Dave Ramsey get out of debt plan... LOL I have been doing a bit of a modified version of this for several years but would like to be more strict on it. We have pretty much stopped the frivolous spending but books and Nook books are a weakness still. I did make a rule that when I get a new book... whether by gift, PBS or other means I have to get rid of one to keep from hoarding them again. I love that you are on this journey, too. It is really not as hard as it might seem at first! :)

Dana Portwood said...

I think the fact that its an extension makes it a logical next step. Books (kindle books especially) are my KRYPTONITE!

Dana Portwood said...

HA! I totally just told Pattie that the Amazon books get me every time. I'm secretly hoping to get random amazon gift cards in the mail every week. :D
We are down to 2.5 bookcases. I plan to read all the unreads this year and get rid of most of them. We might get down to ONE bookcase! Wonder of Wonders!

Leann Richardson said...

Wow... one bookcase! My cookbooks take up three all by themselves!!! LOL But that is work stuff. The rest will be purged down drastically as I read from my shelves more and more. I am still nowhere close to 2.5 yet but I did get two cleared completely of last year and that felt really good. :)

Dana Portwood said...

I really think the fact that God hasn't settled us yet and that I know that ultimately this house is temporary is spurring me on. We moved here with over 20 boxes of BOOKS (And that doesn't even touch Craig's office books) - It's not an experience I care to repeat.
I am letting the library store my books from now on! Obviously, that is not the way everyone needs to approach books, but it's the way I have chosen for us!

Pattie said...

Freebies. Christian publishers are generous with the one-week-at-a-time freebies.

Pattie said...

That totally makes sense. Some books that are favorites are standard library fare, wherever you live. I always ask, when I finish a book I own, "Is this one I will ever, ever read again, or should I pass it along?" Hence, Paperbackswap, Title Wave (used bookstore that purchases books as well as sells for cheap), and of course sending to friends.