CHALLENGE 5

stuff your stuff

This challenge is all about working on the fine art of "intentional buying" which is just a fancy way of saying "think before you buy". There are loads of reasons to avoid accumulating a load of stuff you don't need, but the two most compelling ones are so you stop supporting child labour and large-scale pollution. 

why?

 

child labour

"Fast fashion has engendered a race to the bottom, pushing companies to find ever cheaper sources of labour," says this report in The Guardian. This means that small kids are working in appalling conditions that are tantamount to modern day slavery.

Learn more.

POLLUTION & water waste​

2 billion pairs of jeans are produced every year, and a typical pair takes 7,000 litres of water to produce. That’s the amount of water an average person drinks over the course of 9 years. Then, there’s the dyeing process using 1.7 million tonnes of various chemicals, not to mention the hazardous chemicals like PFCs.

Learn more.

STUFF is bad for you

Think of the time you waste managing your stuff - doing laundry, picking up kids' toys, sorting through paperwork... And then there's the negative effect of clutter on our mental capacities. Clutter makes you feel fatigued, stressed and guilty. So why do so many of us accumulate so much of it?

Learn more.

how?

 

UNDERSTAND

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

DE-CLUTTER

Get rid of the stuff you don't need - try to re-purpose, sell or donate instead of tossing it. Be absolutely ruthless. If you really can't part with something at the moment, put it in a box under your bed and wait. If you find you still want it weeks later, then FINE, you can keep it.

shop less

Aim to only buy when absolutely necessary. Buy secondhand or try to find a socially & environmentally conscious company to buy from. Find out exactly what you're buying and what kind of company and behaviour your purchase is supporting. Act with your wallet.

RESOURCES

 
 

CHILD LABOUR

If you want something other than John Oliver's take, you could watch this one from Save The Children​. If you prefer to read about it, try these articles from: The GuardianTriple PunditSomo, or Raconteur.

 

POLLUTION

Aside from Christina Dean's TED talk, you can also have a look at the videos here. If you prefer to read about it, try these articles from:The EconomistEcowatchAlternet or Greenpeace.

 

HAVING LESS MAKES YOU HAPPIER

In addition to that video, you could visit The Minimalists to see how they live with less, hear from a couple who sold everything and now live out of two suitcases, or read these articles about why you should de-clutter from Goodnet or Makeuseof.

 

WHAT NEXT?

keep going

Remember, the idea is not to drop any of the previous challenges (Get Out ThereThe Final Straw, All The Colours, Eat Less Face) but to keep going with them at a level that you are comfortable with. Read more about how that works here.

tell a friend

Our individual efforts​ won't have much of an impact if there are only a few of us making these changes. The more people we can get involved, the bigger a difference we'll make. Tell a friend or use the buttons below to share this page.

share your story

Tell us about your experience with this challenge on social media. What are you finding hard or easy about it? Tell us about #stuffyourstuff via the social media buttons below. Don't forget to tag The Kin Project when you do.

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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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