I’ll admit it. I’m not perfect. Okay, you already knew that. So consumerism. The subject of so many “simplicity” and “minimalism” blogs’ wrath. I do enjoy reading many of those types of blogs and subscribe to them, I don’t take their words as the gospel. But then again, I don’t take advertisements’ and magazines’ words as the gospel either.
It’s unfortunate that people have to reduce their manner of thinking to black and white about everything, when almost all of it is defined in a shade of gray. Is it bad to like and want to purchase something because you admire its form rather than its function? That can become a very personal question that involves your ideology, or lack thereof.
For me? I’m multilayered. At my core, I know what I really need: my family and close friends. The next layer includes my varied passions. These include math, writing and making art, among others. And then there’s a whole bunch more layers that I won’t get into the nitty gritty with on the internet, but we get to the last few bits that reside on the outside, in society. Just because a part of you is closer to the outside world doesn’t make it any less a part of you. It may even be the best part of you because it is most apt to renew itself. And that is the part that draws on all you know of yourself and applies it to everyday life.
So yesterday I decided that I wanted a pair of red boat shoes. I didn’t have a good reason. I don’t even go on boats. But spring is coming and I hate open toe shoes, so I thought a pair of fun non-sneakers would be a good investment. So I looked online, found a pair of canvas ones that wouldn’t break the bank, and bought them. They’re due to be at my house by the end of the week. I’m actually quite excited to get them. And that’s okay. Because I know my life isn’t all about new shoes. I know my true values, so why shouldn’t I get a pair of new shoes?
So that’s the grand philosophy behind practicing “recreational consumerism.” It’s all about knowing what you are about, and moderation. The moderation is key, which involves self control. Shopping shouldn’t be a default feel good activity. But when you have decided that you would like something and it would improve your life for any reason you like (“It’s just so pretty!” counts here), then who is anyone to tell you that you shouldn’t have it?
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