It’s day 13 of the challenge, and honestly, (apart from fretting over my grease-pot hair and being about ready to throw in the towel on my shampoo-less honey experiment), life isn’t much different.
Truth is, we’ve never been huge consumers. But we think about consuming a lot. An awful lot.
“Oh, my boots are a little worn; should I duck into that store and check-out their sale?” “I love my hubby’s ‘puffy coat.’ I should keep my eyes open for one I like.” “What an adorable little tea-cup. and such a good price. Should I buy it or would it just get broken?” “Do my running cleats need replacing, or can I squeeze another winter out of them?” “Ooo, clearance sale at MEC; who can resist?!”
Well, actually, I can resist. And most of the time, I do. But, there’s this part of my brain chattering away in the background, making decisions about what I will and won’t buy … Every. Waking. Minute. Of. Every. Day.
Finally, that part of brain is starting to shut-up. The silence is unbelievable.
I’ve heard it before–climbing a glacier, hiking the West Coast Trail, or chilling on an Algonquin beach after a paddle. Now, I’m hearing that silence, here in Toronto, while living my every day life. Amazing. (And totally unexpected.)
“I never realized what a habit I had of scrolling through flyers and promo-emails in search of ‘stuff we could (maybe) use,'” says Peter, my husband. ” This challenge is saving me time. Now, I just go: Recycling! Fire-pit! Delete! I love it.”
At the airport, Aurora was distracted by one of the many glamorous (and appropriately positioned) gift shops–because ‘what else are people going to do while they wait?’
“Mommy, look at this! Can we get it? Will you buy it for me, please?”
It’s not that I EVER say ‘yes’ to such impulse requests (well, barely.) But, for some reason, I always feel compelled to look. Not this time. No need to even turn my head.
“No, no. We can’t. Remember?”
“The game: we’re trying to make it a whole year without buying anything!”
“Oh yeah. Hey, cool–look at that plane! It’s taking off! Whoa!”
The moment we step out our door, open a newspaper, turn on the TV, the internet, or sometimes even chat with a friend, we are bombarded by propositions: to buy or not to buy.
Do you want this or that? Now or later? This price? This colour? This deal? This moment. This need. Suddenly, something we didn’t realize existed 20 minutes earlier is consuming our being. Sure, we might resist, but we still dedicate an incredible amount of brainpower to making that decision.
But, not when fasting! To the ever-present, ever-intrusive, annoyingly loud infestation of daily marketing, I thumb my nose in your general direction (which is every direction).
I was hoping this challenge would simplify my life, but I was thinking more about simplification through the de-cluttering of my house.
So far, the de-cluttering of my mind has been the far greater reward.