What Draws You to Non-Consumerism?

by Katy on October 14, 2015 · 70 comments

Today I ask what is it that draws you to non-consumerism? Is it the frugality, the environmental aspect, an interest in simple living or maybe something else altogether?

Maybe you’re just sick and tired of a consumer driven lifestyle? Keeping up with the Joneses?

We’re all here for different reasons on different days. Even I, the creator of The Non-Consumer Advocate go back and forth on why I do what I do. Sometimes it’s to save money, while other times it’s to minimize waste or for reasons of voluntary simplicity. (As opposed to mandatory simplicity, which makes me laugh.)

I choose non-consumerism to preserve my resources. Whether those resources are my time, money, energy or simply those of our planet. To avoid working my ass off to pay for stuff that I don’t value.

So I ask of you, dear readers, what draws you to non-consumerism?

Katy Wolk-Stanley

“Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.”

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{ 70 comments… read them below or add one }

Valerie October 14, 2015 at 10:58 am

Love the way you write, you put a smile on my face daily. You have made me realize some of my wasteful habits, not saying I have changed much but I am now aware. And can I say I want to fly in the Learjet when purchased!


Katy October 14, 2015 at 11:03 am

All readers are invited to my Lear Jet party when I finally find enough pennies on the ground to buy one!


Tammy Brackett October 14, 2015 at 2:42 pm

Oh thank goodness. I was worried about that Lear Jet Party…


Bettypants October 15, 2015 at 5:09 am



Monica October 15, 2015 at 6:07 am

My husband is a pilot who can fly the jet for you!


Vickey November 27, 2015 at 8:59 am

We’re going to need to pool *alot* of gas cards…

Carolyn October 14, 2015 at 11:02 am

I love simplicity! It brings me freedom and peace of mind!


Betty Winslow October 14, 2015 at 11:09 am

To be a wise steward of all that God has given us, so that we can share it with those in need that He brings our way….. saving money, frugal living, thoughtful use of resources, all play into it.


Laure October 14, 2015 at 12:32 pm

My reason too!

Also, I add a note of special thanks to Katy. Given all of our varied reasons to be drawn to non-consumerism, I really appreciate how you keep the blog focused on non-consumerism and don’t write about other things (politics, etc) that we differ on. Wonderful how we can call unite around non-consumerism 🙂


Linda M October 14, 2015 at 2:41 pm

I agree with Betty and Laure! I also like that Katy mentioned that some days her motivators vary…..thought I was the only one. And I, personally, have to give myself pep talks from time to time to “keep on, keepin’ on”.


AFS October 14, 2015 at 7:58 pm

Me too. I embrace “live simply so others can simply live” Because I live frugally there is money to bless others with. I get more pleasure buying groceries for the food bank than I would going out for a steak dinner.


Monica October 15, 2015 at 6:08 am


Amanda October 14, 2015 at 11:09 am

Frugality and simplicity. Less stuff for me means a fatter bank account and fewer things to store/clean/fuss over.


Leslie October 14, 2015 at 11:15 am

Many reasons draw me to non-consumerism. Lately, it’s been the idea that I want as few people to end up with my money as possible. My husband and I work hard for our paychecks, so to give it up freely and without deliberate thought bothers me. So, I try to find ways to lower/eliminate my bills and to hang on to as much of my money as I can.


A. Marie October 14, 2015 at 11:39 am

All of the above, plus one: I enjoy this, darn it. Experience teaches me that if people don’t enjoy what they do, they won’t keep doing it. I’ve quoted this before, and I’ll quote it again (a line I’ve seen attributed to the late Joe Dominguez of Your Money or Your Life): “When this stops being fun, you’ll see my tail lights!”


That Other Jean October 15, 2015 at 6:55 am

This. We are retired and our income is adequate, but limited. We already have “enough” of both the things we need and things we want. Minimizing waste and reducing our footprint on the planet are important to us. Spending now is generally about maintaining our health, our home, our pets, and our hobbies, while finding less expensive ways to make our lives easier to manage. It’s a challenge (the fun kind) to see how much bang we can get for our bucks.


Kate October 14, 2015 at 11:44 am

There’s the environment, there’s a family of four deliberately living on one income, there’s savings, there’s the mountains of crap in my parents’ and in-laws’ houses…yeah, it’s all those things but sadly I think it was the last one that started it for me. I just don’t want my life to be about the stuff.


A. Marie October 14, 2015 at 1:17 pm

Oh, yes, I forgot the mountains of parental crap. When DH and I had to clean out our mothers’ dwellings within 6 months of each other, this definitely got us thinking about that part of the question.


Kate October 14, 2015 at 1:22 pm

I’m so sorry you had to go through that. My mother-in-law has actually apologized in advance for it all. My mother, who’s much worse, just doesn’t see the problem.


MW October 14, 2015 at 1:23 pm

Can I upvote this? Or “like” it?


Lilypad October 14, 2015 at 2:45 pm

My parents (born in 1935 and 1937) are the same way! I think it has something to do with them rebelling against the deprivation of their childhoods during the Depression/WWII era, and then being teenagers in the prosperous 1950’s and young adults during the turbulent 1960’s—they want to buy everything because they feel entitled and want to look good to others yet they don’t want to give away any of it in case bad times come again and they “need” it again. Sigh. I covet my mom’s 1950’s-early 1960’s mid-century modern furniture and china/kitchen items, but pretty much everything else is going to Goodwill some day, and when I think of what they could have spent their money on instead (like my son’s education or trips together as a family)…..ack!! There goes my blood pressure again.


Lilypad October 14, 2015 at 2:48 pm

p.s. I need to add in my mother-in-law (born 1936) to my very unscientific group study—she’s the worst of the lot. 😉


Cristie Glasheen October 14, 2015 at 11:48 am

I am fed up with the consumerism. I am tired of being sold at. I am sick of marketers trying to manipulate me into valuing myself based on what I own and always trying to make me feel like it is still (I am still) not enough.


Tracy October 14, 2015 at 4:04 pm

I feel exactly the same way, Cristie!


Cheri October 15, 2015 at 8:27 am

Yes! Fed up with consumerism. And with Christmas coming, I am dreading the ordeal. I would love to make donations to a charity like Samaritan’s Purse or Heifer International instead of buying presents for people who don’t need anything. That idea didn’t fly very far, unfortunately.


Patty October 14, 2015 at 12:26 pm

Just to be a good steward of what we’ve been given. I also hate waste, so that’s a big motivator too. It feels clever to live life this way too. Anyone can waste stuff and money, but it takes some thinking to make do or do without.


shel October 14, 2015 at 12:57 pm

I’ve had a massive amount of credit card debt, I am now free of said CC debt (for several years now). I don’t ever want to go back to that life and if I ever lost my job or found myself in reduced circumstances, I want to know that I would be able to survive on my emergency fund without a learning curve. 🙂


Jeana October 14, 2015 at 12:58 pm

When I first embraced non consumerism 25 years ago I was all about the environment. As I’ve gotten older my shift has been toward not giving my money to corporations who don’t share my values. I still try very hard to not contribute to the manufacture of new things, though


Kate in NY October 14, 2015 at 1:23 pm

I have to admit something. I am not a very consistent when it comes to my non-consumerism. I’ll be dedicated for a while – cooking from scratch, hanging my laundry, avoiding the temptation of the local coffee shop – and then bam. Out of nowhere the want-iness strikes, and I say “screw it,” and end up with a new pair of shoes and a double latte. I want to be a non-consumer to the core, but it really isn’t who I am – I have an extravagant side that comes out now and then, and I accept her. Reading blogs like this one (especially this one!) inspire me to cultivate the non-consumer side of myself. Non-consumerism reminds me that the deepest pleasures in my life are not found at the mall – and while a brand new (yes, new) outfit will give me a little lift, it is only a fleeting pleasure. Good (cheap) food and drink with family and friends, long walks with my husband and our dogs, a pile of books on hold at the library – these are the simplest and most gratifying joys.


Roberta October 15, 2015 at 5:54 am

I understand the desire to buy a new outfit or a latte. Sometimes it just seems too hard to keep doing everything, and everyone else seems to have it easier, and I’m the only one who doesn’t get to (whatever).

That’s why I come here every day. For the encouragement that I’m not the only one who waits for my thing to come in at the thrift shop, and makes do in the meantime. Who entertains at home instead of having dinner out, and someone else do the cleanup. I’m frugal/thrifty/cheap because I want to homeschool my kids and live on my husband’s public school teacher salary, and spend out on the big stuff, not the little stuff.


Monica October 15, 2015 at 6:10 am

I heartily agree with you! And I love the encouragement The Non-Consumer Advocate and her blog provide each day.


Kate in NY October 15, 2015 at 7:27 am

I read once that how frugal a person is has more to do with genetic make-up than it is does with the environment in which he or she was raised. (I will try and link here – though I’m not sure it will work.) If this is true, I definitely do not have the frugal gene. It simply doesn’t come easily to me – unlike Katie, I don’t seem to actually get pleasure out of not-spending (if that makes sense). But I know it is the right way – for our finances, for the environment, as an antidote to our consumer-obsessed culture. All those things DO bring me pleasure. So I come here for encouragement and the inspiration – it is my favorite! http://www.families.com/blog/being-frugal-is-genetically-influenced


Bettypants October 15, 2015 at 11:24 am

I think that is true, based on myself and my siblings. My brother and I are VERY frugal. My sister is normal, and my other brother is generous to his own detriment.

Maureen October 14, 2015 at 1:23 pm

I love the peace, security and simplicity of it. I can breathe.


Ruth October 14, 2015 at 9:03 pm

I’m with you Maureen


Ruby October 14, 2015 at 1:34 pm

For us, it’s the first three you mentioned: frugality, environmentalism, and the desire for a simple life. We struggled financially for a long time in low-paying white collar jobs before my husband went back to school and retrained for a new career. Thank heavens we were already frugal or those years would have put us under. In his last year of school, we lived on about $10,000, a total that included $6,000 in mortgage payments, which was our only debt. We pinched and scrimped and frugaled like mad that year.

A lot of frugality goes hand-in-hand with caring for the environment. Frugal people buy less stuff, make it last longer, don’t usually buy disposable stuff, drive fuel-efficient vehicles. The list goes on and on.

Our desire for a simple life got a major kick in the pants when we had to clean out my mother’s house and his parents’ house to sell them. We just totally do not want to ever have to deal with that much stuff again.


auntiali October 14, 2015 at 2:03 pm

It started with me being cheap once I was 18 and had to pay my own way – board to my parents, car insurance, car payment, buying my own clothes, etc.

Then I got married and had a child and decided – with hubby’s support – to stay home. Frugality really became a way of life. We saved so we could have a cushion and have money to give to my church. Now we have a nice cushion, dh has the retirement stuff all together and I am able to give to more charities. Recycling is a way of life and I freak out when I go somewhere where there is no recycling. I practice non consumerism as there is really is nothing out there that I want. So dh is happy as he gets an allowance each week – I do too – and he has money to play golf.


Trish October 14, 2015 at 2:14 pm

The single biggest reason for me is to preserve the environment, which means so very much to me. Wildlife and plant life. Monarch butterflies, warblers in spring, Eagles in winter, owls hooting at dusk, gorgeous trees, beautiful wildflowers. And I also love simplicity, and NOT hanging out at the mall on Saturday, trying to add to my wardrobe. Another reason is that I love living as far beneath my means as possible, so I can help others with any excess I may have. I believe in that very very strongly. ‘From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs’.


Laura October 15, 2015 at 8:44 pm

Love this!


Deborah October 14, 2015 at 2:23 pm

Since my family is blessed with all the basics–jobs and shelter and food and great family connections, non-consuming to me is my way of practicing gratitude for all we have that otherwise may not be adequately appreciated. It get me to the “heart” of living life well and empowers me to want to share more with others and preserve natural resources for future generations including my grandchildren.


Jessica October 14, 2015 at 2:39 pm

As a Biology professor I was “mandated” to teach an Environmental Education course back in 2005. Prepping for the class I realized that I needed to make big changes in my life. It revolutionized everything, but most importantly it made me aware of the fact that God created this planet and put its care in our hands. Being a good steward became a moral obligation for me and I’ve never looked back.


Lilypad October 14, 2015 at 2:53 pm

My reasons are:
1) to live on one income so I can stay home and homeschool my teenage son
2) to better protect the environment—I am a big hippie from way back
3) to better vote with my dollars, as far as where and how I spend the money earned by my husband’s long hours.


Patricia October 14, 2015 at 3:30 pm

My reasons (thank you Lilypad for doing the list idea) are:
1. I am the sole breadwinner in my family of myself and my adult daughter, so purchasing anything new would be difficult anyway.
2. To make the environment better for the future.
3. I love the thrift shops in my area, especially the church and Hospice shops.
4. My mother taught me how to thrift early in life, as after her neck was broken when someone rear-ended our car in 1964, she was unable to work. With a family of 6 on my father’s self-employed income, she learned how to sew our clothing, put up food, and waste nothing. She and Dad (married 65 years), continue to make due every day, and I try to follow their example.
5. Being without clutter makes me happy.


Jen T October 14, 2015 at 3:52 pm

My husband and are hoping to open a business within the next year. I’m working on simplifying our home and saving money so if it does happen we will have less stress on the home front


Megan October 14, 2015 at 4:18 pm

1) The first light bulb moment happened when you shared how less shopping equals more free time, less stuff to handle, less stuff to clean and more money in the bank.
2) There is no much food & clothing waste happening all over it is disgusting. Again, eating leftovers or being creative with what is in the fridge/pantry saves me time, energy and money.
3) I do love seeing things being repaired and reused or sold to save things from the landfill.
I need you though Katy!!! I really don’t know that many people that have this mindset so thanks for your entertaining and thought provoking blog! Many people in my world buy a new purse every season!


Marcia October 14, 2015 at 4:29 pm

Necessity was my first motivator–and the example of my parents who lived through the depression as teenagers and young adults. Our first 8 years of married life were with my husband in the military–we were always saving for the next move and the leave time so we could have some fun. Then we were saving for a down payment on a house, then fixing up the house, etc. Now we are retired and back to 2 but I can’t pay “full price” for anything–it just rubs me the wrong way, and I know I can do better by just waiting a little bit. My DD and SIL think the same way—good quality things when we buy, but at reduced prices, even to food and everyday necessities. We also got on the recycling and do it yourself kicks in the 70’s when they were still relatively new—saving the planet by having only two kids, to start with. Always making the resources last as long as possible. Now my husband enjoys restoring old cars–he has a 68 and a 72 right now, as well as the 2003 which he drives every day. I sew, knit, cook, garden, etc.–as much as possible to get the most value from everything I spend–or expend my efforts on ! I have friends my age who say “spend” –what are you saving it for now?? At this late age? (I’m 72.) I’m just not able to throw money away when I now how to get most things for less. If there is any left over, my DD and DGD will get it. Granddaughter has a long way to go to learn “our ways.” She’s a spender but we’re trying to teach her better habits. She works hard but she hasn’t found her true calling yet–she’s only 22, but she’s working on it.


Lindsey October 14, 2015 at 4:39 pm

I’m afraid I resisted frugality until one day a co-worker said she didn’t want to go out to lunch with the rest of us because at her salary she had to work 2 hours to pay for lunch (about 1985) and if she brought leftovers she was working for about 5 minutes to pay for her lunch. Plus she could spend her lunch hour reading. It was like a bolt. From that day on I started evaluating things by how long I had to work for them. I loved my job, but it was still unsettling to see how many hours I had to work for a new pair of shoes or, worse, a new car when the one I had was just fine if ugly. I think the only time I went out for lunch after that was to help celebrate someone’s birthday (our job paid for a restaurant lunch for every employee’s birthday, although we had to pay the tip because of some sort of grant accounting rule). It was an office of six, so not too expensive spread over a year. (They also gave every birthday person a $50 gift certificate to a grocery store. Why did I leave this job again?)

I also like that being frugal means a less cluttered home and is environmentally wise. These days it give me a little thrill to think of a new way to repurpose something!


marleen October 14, 2015 at 5:20 pm

For me it started out as a matter of necessity. We couldn’t afford much when we were first married, so we learned to make do, and make everything we had last as long as possible. When we had more money to spend, it made no sense to buy things we knew how to do without, we knew how to create ourselves, or we could improvise for. I hate waste of money or waste of material things. The time I spend cooking from scratch, sewing, keeping things maintained, repurposing, is much more satisfying for me than a day at the mall.


Dorf October 14, 2015 at 5:41 pm

I see myself in lots of answers: consumerist parents (born 1938), ’70 s childhood in Oregon with a big emphasis on the environment, young years spent financing world travels on low wage jobs (learning you don’t have to be rich to do awesome things), raising children on one income and modeling creative frugality for them. Now I live in Germany and everyone here consumes less and recycles more. I am appalled when I visit ‘green’ Portland and see the waste there. I read this not to lose faith in my fellow Americans! And to get my Portland fix.


Lilypad October 15, 2015 at 7:41 am

At the hippie food co-op I shop at, often the checker will thank me for bringing reusable bags and it always makes me chuckle. I learned to bring my own bags the hard way when I lived in Germany 25 years ago—the first time I went shopping, the checker glared at me and charged me for a plastic bag! Europeans are so much farther ahead than the US when it comes to environmental issues. The town I usually shop in now (Issaquah, WA) passed a “bring your own bag” law a few years ago so the Trader Joe’s etc. charge 5 cents for paper bags. A checker told me some people get really mad about it. Sigh.


Marcy October 14, 2015 at 5:47 pm

Thrift and environmental concern first brought me to it. I love saving money and wasting stuff (like food) or breaking stuff just kills me.

But one thing that has kept me non-consumer is that it brings joy to my life.

You can get so much extra joy when you getting a smiley feeling when you eat oatmeal for breakfast every day, or you smugly dry three loads of washing on your line, or you feel proud that you’ve cooked all your own means in a week.


Vonlipi October 14, 2015 at 5:55 pm

First I don’t want to stress about paying a bill. Do I have money, will I be able to buy food , pay the rent, the vet?
I was a homeowner for 20 years and it stressed the hell out of me! We sold the house and are now my Dad’s tenants. I try to keep a tight budget, not buy new and shop within my apartment and my Dad’s.

I want to be free. Everything is so expensive these days, I want to stretch my hard earned money as far as I can!

Thanks for the inspiration!!!


Marilyn October 14, 2015 at 6:14 pm

I was raised to be frugal, I think. When I was a kid, I thought everyone darned the holes in their socks, kept a rag bag in the garage, saved buttons in a button box in the cabinet. However, when I grew up and went to work, I went on a spending spree — clothes, furniture, new car, travel. It reached the point where I couldn’t sleep at night, worrying about the bills. Also, I had 2 little kiddos and I did not want to work full time. I realized I valued my time more than money. I reverted back to the way I was raised, paid my credit card debts, found a part-time job and never regretted it.


Sara G. October 14, 2015 at 6:32 pm

Simplicity. I have been overwhelmed in the past, so now I keep working to create a simple and good life for myself and my family.


Pattilou October 14, 2015 at 7:29 pm

Environmental reasons and simplicity top my list. I also work at a non profit that has cut our salaries and work hours over the years so being frugal enables me to weather the rough patches!


Ruth October 14, 2015 at 8:43 pm

For me it’s a mixed bag, I came hunting and found you Katy while trying to save money as I’m a single mum with two children at university.

I am far from perfect , I fail often but I found my focus has changed.

Like you Katy I’m a RN but working in a busy emergency department where all day every day people want want want and need, the most sick can actually be the least demanding and I give them my all, the least sick and the relatives are often demanding , arrogant , uncaring about others and want everything free and instant and /or very aggressive thanks to anxiety, drugs and alcohol which seem to me the least frugal things ever as no one really gains from them …so now I come here as another thing a a kind of solitude, where common sense prevails , where I can learn something from unselfish people , where I find and grasp ideas, at times your my time out from the push and pull of a busy life

There you go ….I love your site …thank you


Charli October 14, 2015 at 9:03 pm

It’s consumerism and the never ending pursuit of gaining more possessions that bothers me. I’m a Christian and for me I can see that stuff and the pursuit of stuff can drag me away from what’s important. It becomes like a drug that comforts you temporarily and doesn’t satisfy in the long run. gaining more stuff never gives me peace. I also see being a non consumer as a bit of a challenge and it leaves me with more money to spend on things I consider important. So many reasons I can’t pick one!


momsav October 15, 2015 at 2:16 am

All of the above….


Diane October 15, 2015 at 3:32 am

I am poor financially, yet want to live a happy life. So I do all I can to bring joy into my life of simplicity. I make delicious meals from simple basic ingredients, I wear well fitting, becoming clothing from thrift stores. I create beautiful items from small pieces of fabric or recycled materials. I turn trash items into treasures for my home. I read widely, watch any film I desire online, and live outdoors on our trails and in our pools.

Living a thoughtful simple life defines me in many ways that I consider true to my values. Non consumerism helps me be my best self.


K D October 15, 2015 at 4:40 am

Ditto to Katy and everyone that commented.

I started on this road when I read The Tightwad Gazette, Your Money or Your Life, and The Millionaire Next Door around 1998. I was a stay at home mom of a little one and I wanted a secure future without having to go back to work.


Isabelle October 15, 2015 at 5:21 am

I do it to save money.
And because I don’t agree with the society that says “buy, buy, buy!!”, so it’s my little “pied de nez” to this.


Monica October 15, 2015 at 6:06 am

Wow, great question for today. 1) Fear, is my driving factor. Fear of not having enough money. I am being laid off soon, so fear is ever-present right now. This fear ties into reason # 2. 2) Life Experience. My life experience is having had a job since I was 13, always having my own spending money, and supporting myself right up through buying my own house at 29 and into my marriage, where I now support my whole family on my paycheck. I never had boyfriends who had money to spend on me, and didn’t luck out finding a husband who had a job that paid him big $$$. So, I’ve shouldered that burden for most of my life, and that is just the way it is with me. I don’t have money to waste on what I condiser to be junk. Too late to change now! Although, winning the lottery would be most welcome! 3) Good role models: When it came to learning about how to make do, and spend wisely, my parents were great role models in that. Also, gotta give credit where it is due: Reading the Little House books as a child and young adult instilled the value of $ and how to spend it in me. A big influence there. 4) The Fun of It! Its fun to challenge myself in finding a bargain for good quality merchandise, and I love swapping childrens’ clothes with my friends and family.


Vickie October 15, 2015 at 6:49 am

Freedom. Freedom from debt, freedom from stuff, freedom from over-consumption. Freedom to live simple and be happy.


Jennifer October 15, 2015 at 8:10 am

I just stumbled onto this blog a few weeks ago and I have to say I’m somewhat addicted at this point. I have been indulging in previous NCA posts all the way back to 2013! I have been reading like a “can’t put down” book since. I read on the fox news website this morning that we all really need to rethink how much soap we use while showering. I immediately thought of Katy, lol! Apparently, we are all washing off our good bacteria and sending it down the drain. I thought this was a great thing to mention to the frugalista followers. So basically it said to not wash your extremities unless they are extremely dirty which there by saves $$ using less soap. If you line dry your towels they kinda get rid of any extra funk anyway. I’m a registered nurse so I know alot about bacteria and I think I may start using less soap myself. Anyway, I know this is totally unrelated to this post, I just thought you all might like the food for thought like I did. I am drawn to frugality because of the sticker shock in all the stores, I love the challenge of finding ways to spend less, and most importantly teaching my children there is a better way to live. I challenge myself to spend just a few dollars on homemaking most of ours meals yet make then still hearty and delicious. I also buy many things second hand or severely discounted and I feel completely fulfilled. I want my children to understand that life is meant to be lived, not on the hamster wheel of what society makes us think we need. Ok, off my little rant now. So glad I found your site, thanks Katy!


Bettypants October 15, 2015 at 11:12 am

I’m naturally cheap. I genuinely enjoy finding bargains and saving money. It’s only been in the last couple years that I’ve realized we have accumulated far too much. I started selling a few things and appreciated the extra space. It really is true that ridding yourself of possessions is freeing. Suddenly, I was seeing more and more things in our house that none of us cared about.

Now I ‘m plodding along, selling what I can, saving the money for college expenses. We don’t have any debt, and I like the freedom and peace of mind of knowing there is money put away.


Kim from Philadelphia October 15, 2015 at 11:45 am

I want to tread lightly on this beautiful earth of ours.
I want to teach my don that the most important “things” in life are people, relationships, and experiences.
I want to be free of the stress that debt creates.
I want to make my own food, clean my own house, weed my own garden- and enjoy the satisfaction that comes from doing those things.
I want to share what I have with others- time, talents, things that those not as fortunate as me might not have.


cheryl October 15, 2015 at 6:19 pm

I’m drawn to non-consumerism because I want to be deliberate about how I spend my money and what companies I support. I want to lessen the impact of consumerism and affluenza on the environment. I want to work less, have less stuff and as a result have more time and more life to enjoy and share. The votes I cast with my dollars are more powerful than any letter I could write to a senator or congressman so I make sure they count. I’m pretty new to your blog, but am really enjoying your perspective and approach to living a non-consuming lifestyle.


Val October 16, 2015 at 5:48 am

I think I’m drawn to non-consumerism for the same reasons as you, although not as “full time” as you. I’m striving to buy less new things and more used but I still feel the urge to splurge at times. Your blog is great and it really inspires me.


Mariana Cisowska October 16, 2015 at 8:00 am

For me it is a two-fold things:

– the dream of financial freedom one day. It is buying another useless thing vs. retiring 3, 5 or even 3 years earlier.

– spending money just does not make me any happier. Ok, maybe for the first hour that new dress makes me happy but after that, you know, life goes on. I’d rather have money in my 401k than another piece of clothing I may wear 2-3 times a year!


A. Marie October 16, 2015 at 12:52 pm

Just tacking on one more comment here because I’m awed and delighted by the many different perspectives represented here. As several folks have said above, I’m deeply grateful to Katy for providing us all with a forum where we can courteously and respectfully share our different takes on frugality. There aren’t many places where we can do this these days.

And just a P.S. on my mother (b. 1921) and my MIL (b. 1916): I’d be doing both their memories a disservice if I implied that they were deeply consumerist; they weren’t, especially my mother. It’s just that, being true Depression kids, neither of them threw *anything* out–which left us two fine messes to deal with when they had to be moved into institutional living.


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