3 Strategies to Stop Shopping

Wait 3 days

shopping (2)This is something I use often.

When I see something I want, I force myself to put it back, and then I wait 72 hours.

If I am still thinking about it, 72 hours later, then it’s clear I really need or want it.

Assess if it’s a need or a want

In that 72 hour time period, I go through an inventory what I already have.

I think about possible substitutes.

I think about where and when I’d use it, calculating the cost-per-use for a week/month/year including time spent.

Get rid of something

I get rid of something to make space for it.

If I cannot get rid of anything, it makes a stronger case to not buy it.

True Scenario: I want a new kettle

I’ve identified a need that my old kettle broke and I needed a new one.

kettleI researched for the perfect kettle just to get the idea of how much it would cost for what I want.

It was $20.

With that shopping information in hand, I waited a minimum of 3 days (in my case, a week).

During the week, I casually noted how many times I used a kettle.

Seemed to be only when I have tea in the morning.

So I looked for other alternatives: heating water on the stove, or simply microwaving water in a cup.

I experimented with my daily tea by using the above methods.

The stove turned out to be an energy waster, and it was inconvenient.

But microwaving water in a cup for 3 minutes on high worked wonderfully.

In the end, I decided that I didn’t really need a kettle.

I didn’t use it often enough to justify its usage, and microwaving water in a cup works just as quickly.

Conclusion: I have one less kitchen appliance.

This is a really banal example above, and now my microwave is a multi-tasking appliance.

(What did we ever do without them!? Stoves and ovens take so long to reheat anything)

But it actually happened, and now I have one less kitchen appliance to plug in and use.

About the Author

I'm a 20-something year old girl who lived out of a single suitcase in 2007, and now I'm living with less, but only with the best. You don't have to get rid of everything to become a minimalist! Minimalism can help simplify and organize your life, career, & physical surroundings. You can read more about me as a minimalist. Or come and visit my other blog Fabulously Broke in the City where I got out of $60,000 of debt in 18 months, earning $65,000 gross/year.