THIS WEEK'S CHALLENGE...

STUFF YOUR STUFF

This month, the challenge is to work on the habit of intentional buying.

This just means thinking before you buy so you don't end up with a load of stuff you don't need, especially when it comes to clothes. 

 

This will help you stop doing the following:

A) Inadvertently contributing to child labour

B) Wrecking the planet 

C) Filling your home with stuff you don't need

D) Wasting your valuable time taking care of that stuff

E) Letting your things bring you down

WHY THIS HABIT?

Let me tell you a story.

 

My first real job out of university involved festering in an office in New Jersey, USA for about a year until a school friend suggested we go travel.

 

Clearly, it would be very stupid to ditch a coveted job with a great company to go backpacking, so of course I said "Yes." I asked my boss for a leave of absence and, to my complete surprise, he and HR agreed. 

As I practically danced out of the office on my last day there, a colleague sighed to me, "Oh, I wish I could do what you're doing." I asked why he couldn't and he responded, "Well, I just bought a sofa."

I JUST BOUGHT A SOFA. Are you fecking kidding me??

His answer completely stunned me. I was beyond baffled that someone could get to the point where his possessions owned him rather than the other way round. 

Fourteen years and two kids later, I can sort of see how it happens.

 

We started house hunting recently and a beautiful place within our price range popped up. We oohed and aahed over how perfect it was, how incredible the location was, how happy we'd be living there... And then we dismissed it as being too small. 

Of course, after a savvier buyer had purchased it, we realised it wasn't too small for us at all. We could have lived there just fine. It was too small for our stuff.

 

We'd let our stuff make an important decision for us.

That triggered a monumental purge of our belongings and a vow to never return to our previous levels of clutter. It also gave me the idea for the first challenge and led me to research all those horrible side effects of consumerism listed above.

 

Oh my GAWD, is shopping ugly.

SO WHAT SHOULD I DO?

1

Learn what our mindless consumption does to the planet and other people. It's horrifying. Watch The True Cost or learn more via the Resources section below. It'll make doing the challenge much easier as you'll really understand the 'why'.

2

Get rid of the stuff you don't need - try to re-purpose, sell or donate instead of tossing it.

3

Aim to only buy when absolutely necessary. Buy secondhand or try to find a socially & environmentally conscious company to buy from. Know who you're buying from. 

4

Get all New-Agey. Examine WHY you're buying and don't just buy without thought. Encourage others, especially kids if you have them, to think about why they're buying, too. 

 

We'll be breaking this down into easy bite-size pieces throughout the month of June. By the end of the month, we'll all be weaving our own hair-cloth garments and living in a commune... 

RESOURCES

On child labour in fashion:

 

Or this one from Save The Children

If you prefer to read about it, try these articles from:

The Guardian, Triple Pundit, Trusted ClothesSomo, or Raconteur.

On pollution in fashion:

 

 

 

Or the videos here

If you prefer to read about it, try these articles from:

The Economist, Ecowatch, Alternet or Greenpeace.

On why having less stuff makes us happier:

 

 

 

Or read these articles from:

Good Housekeeping, Goodnet or Makeuseof.

 
 
 

SHARE YOUR STORY

 

 

We'd love to hear about your experience with this challenge on social media.

The funnier the story, the better.

This month's hashtag:

#kinstuff

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GOT FEEDBACK?

Do you have suggestions for future challenges?

What do you think about this challenge?

Any ideas/questions about the rest of the site?

Send us an email at hello@thekinproject.com or use the form below.

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