Economy,  Shopping

Week 50: Buy Nothing New

If you had asked me to take this challenge a few years ago, I would have told you it was impossible. These days, however, it’s pretty much par for the course with my family. I think part of that is because our general consumption is down, but also because I know a number of resources for buying used, trading, or making do with what we have.

The goal is this: buy nothing new. Obviously this doesn’t include food, medication, or toiletrice. It does mean clothes, toys, sports equipment, accessories, tools, yarn (yes, yarn), or anything you can really think of. You can buy used (think Value Village or Kijiji), trade (Bunz or Trashnothing), or make do with something that you already own. We’ve talked about some other great resources before like libraries that you can definitely make use of as well. 

The outcome it this: you’re not only saving money and diverting waste from the landfill, but you’re learning how to disrupt the system. Products are made based on demand, so if enough people stopped consuming at such a rapid page, the demand for items will eventually drop and the resources on our limited planet will stop being consumed as rapidly. 

The Buy Nothing New Challenge isn’t as hard as you might think. There’s lots of folks who have documented their experiences online, so have a read to see if you think it might be for you:

One Empty Shelf: Buy Nothing New

Eco Warrior Princess: Buy Nothing New Challenge: It’s Easier Than You Think

The Globe and Mail: The buy-nothing-new challenge

Green Child: The Buy Nothing New Challenge

But I Like Stuff: Buy Nothing New Challenge – 2018

AlterNet: I Didn’t Buy Anything New For 200 Days (And You Shouldn’t Either)

Ready to go? Do it! Set a timeline (a month? Two months? A year?!) and get to it. With the skills and knowledge you’ve learned over the last 50 weeks, it should be a breeze! Here’s a great resource to get you started: https://www.buynothingnew.com.au/how/

Ready to take it to the next level? Challenge your friends and family and make it a team effort. 

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