Before You Buy : Questions To Ask For A Minimalistic Lifestyle

Before You Buy : Questions To Ask For A Minimalistic Lifestyle
Before You Buy : Questions To Ask For A Minimalistic Lifestyle

As one hand declutters stuff, the other hand keeps buying more stuff! Despite our best intentions to stay minimalistic, the flashy or cute packaging, omnipresent ads and the low costs of mass produced goods tempt us from time to time. And long before we realize what's happening, we once again get caught in mindless consumerism and end up with tons of stuff. This is especially difficult if you are a recovering shopaholic - words like 'sale', 'limited time offer' and cute things on pinterest are enough to increase your heart beat!

Here are a few questions to ask yourself before buying anything:

  • Need vs Want: Do you really need it? It's okay to want things, but the thing with "wants" is, they keep changing. What you desperately crave for today, may be completely out of your mind next week.
  • Impulse vs wait: Just saw it and can't resist buying? Wait for a while, at least for 24 hours. Do you still feel the same about it? Are you buying it just because it's on sale? Will you be buying it for a full price? Is this just yet another new shiny thing?
  • Afford: Can you afford it? How much dent is it going to make it on your wallet?
  • Space: Can your house afford enough space for it? Where do you plan to keep it?
  • Utility: Is this a one time or daily utility thing? Does the utility justify the price? Is this thing going to make your life easier? What problem is it going to solve?
  • Past purchases: Analyze or take a quick look at all the things you have bought in the past one year. Are they being useful to you? Do you regret buying any of them?
  • Quality: Is it going to last long enough?
  • Timeless: Is it timeless or will it be soon out of fashion? Is this just a new fad?
  • Basics: Is this part of the 80% basics which you mostly use or 20% of the superficial stuff which you may or may not use?
  • Brand: Are you paying a huge sum of money just for the brand name?
  • Style: Does it suit your style?
  • One for one: How about getting rid of a least useful item before you make space for a new one in your life?
  • DIY: Can this be DIYd? Can something else which you already have serve the same purpose with some modifications? Any other alternative?
  • The List: Make a list of all the things you think you are supposed to use, but don't. They must be sitting around somewhere in your house, still unopened or unused gathering dust.
  • Multipurpose: Is this thing versatile enough to serve several purposes for you?
  • Care: Are you willing to care for it - dusting, deep cleaning, fixing etc? Do you need any additional things to care for it - refills/replacements/add ons etc?(e.g: cartridges of printer or photo cards of a instant cam)
  • Research: Did you research enough about it and compare features, cost etc?

Minimalism is asking WHY before you buy it. 

Once again, this doesn't mean living in a pathetic condition - after all, minimalism goal is to make your life better. This is just a checklist to help you not to bring anything which can become potential clutter. By all means, treat yourself. Live a little by allowing yourself to buy what you have always needed or wanted. Pamper yourself. Splurge occasionally. Just make sure that it's not too much burden on your future self and way too contradictory to the lifestyle you are trying to maintain.


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