Youth Talk

July 11 - 17, 2018

I truly feel that there is no individual more stuck in the clutches of consumerism than myself.

At my home, each quick tidying around becomes a stark realisation of what is potentially a less than ideal relationship with physical things.

We all have possessions that we might feel we can’t live without. It could be a treasured collection, a gift from a special someone or items one considers an extension of one’s identity.

It could be belongings leftover from your childhood, that because of the memories these can evoke, you wish to hold onto. However, if you, like me, have multiple pieces of an item when just one would suffice, or you can’t seem to let go of something in the false belief that it might be useful someday, then perhaps  it’s time to start questioning if you have fallen prey to the consumerist society we live in today.

It’s not only adverts coaxing us into believing we want things we do not necessarily need, but trips to the shopping mall have become sort of a pastime.

 It is only recently that I discovered that many of my belongings are things I could easily do without.

I have, over the years, mindlessly accumulated tons of items on sadly very frequent excursions to the shops, perhaps in a bid to experience positive emotion. Now that that has been brought to my notice, and because I’d prefer things differently, I can take steps at becoming more careful of what I have and what I buy.

 I fully recognise how lucky I am to have this problem, if you can call it that, of owning too much stuff that it becomes a nuisance. But I feel even luckier for being aware of such spending habits. 

De-cluttering, therefore, becomes a necessity not only as a means of getting rid of excess, but also as a way towards more mindful living.

I am especially intrigued by the concept of owning less not in order to attain material freedom but as a means of being better able to care for the things that do add value to your life.

It also serves as a gentle reminder that the best things in life to spend on are experiences … and not things.

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