(ENG only) Like I mentioned here and there a while ago, I wanted to give the whole shopping fast another try. My first ever one was last year, from June until September, and it lasted 100 days. I found the whole experience very beneficial, financially speaking but also on a personal level. Back then I decided to take this challenge for 2 reasons: a) trying to be more focused and grateful for what I have already, in the attempt of going through a rough patch in my life; b) trying to see how much I was able to push further my minimalist and frugal lifestyle as a conscious consumer.
On January 1st I have started a new shopping ban, this time a 6 month one. I had such a positive feeling while being on that 100 days shopping fast that I wanted to give it another try, but for a longer time. And I personally find 6 months to give a sufficient amount of time to keep this project running successfully. As much as doing this for an entire year sounds challenging but very inspiring and surely beneficial (my friend Nina from The Minimalist Ninja , for example, started a yearlong one last October), I don’t see it as something realistic that would work for me and my current situation. Here’s why I committed to a new shopping ban, for 6 months:
- being no longer employed full time, my income and financial situation will be much different from now on, since I will be only working part time and rely on any eventual additional income from my work as a content creator;
- trying to keep on working on feeling content and grateful, as an act of self love, self appreciation and self care;
- creating more frugal routines and habits;
- making a bigger effort as a conscious consumer and sustainable living advocate.
The guidelines I’ve set are similar to the ones of my first ban but with a few modifications:
NO WARDROBE ITEMS. No clothes, no shoes, no accessories (both new and thrifted), unless something needs to be replaced (hand me downs, free items and borrowed stuff are allowed but only if needed).
NO NEW ITEMS OF ANY KIND
- of course, money spent for repairing items are allowed. If no repair is possible, replacements are permitted.
- yes to eventual items for the apartment, if needed. If this is the case, everything will be previously discussed with my partner (I want to maintain a bit of flexibility here as we are still thinking about looking for a new apartment to live in).
- yes to books, max. 4. Libraries not always offer what I am looking for, so as much as I try to stick to them, sometimes I feel like reading something that is either not available or has too long waiting lines. A maximum of 6 books to purchase seems reasonable.
NO MEALS OUT AND/OR TAKE AWAY FOOD OUT OF CONVENIENCE OR LAZINESS. Like I decided to do for my previous ban, I am allowing this time as well the joy of sharing meals out with someone for special occasions (someone I haven’t seen in a while, people visiting here in Berlin, birthday celebrations etc.), but only if this is the case. Phone is banned at all cost during the whole duration of the meal, so I can be fully focused on the food, the company and the whole experience.
NO JUNK FOOD. Sometimes I can spend money a bit mindlessly if it’s something that I really like eating, and unfortunately junk stuff are one of those things. So no refined sugars, no trigger foods, no unhealthy snacks, etc. Just one treat once a week is allowed (in this way I can stay healthy and save money too).
NO ALCOHOL. This is a new one for me. I enjoy drinking alcohol and even though I am not a regular consumer like I used to be when I was younger, recently I have come to realize more and more how difficult it’s becoming to tolerate it and how bad it is to deal with an eventual hangover. I have been drinking alcohol for more than a decade now (I think I started when I was 17) and even if it’s not something I do regularly, I never went through whole phases without it. Alcohol seems to be a big component when dining and meeting with people, so I am not sure how this will work out, especially considering that I live in Germany (hello beer land). But I am determined to make this work (it might be difficult but not impossible) and see how this will affect me, financially (non alcoholic beverages are usually cheaper) and healthily.
(Of course consumables and edibles for my nutrition, my hygiene, overall thriving etc. are allowed).
I am excited to see how this will turn out. Have you ever tried a shopping ban? Here’s some content that might help you get started or find your motivation in case you don’t know how to start: