Accumulation

I’ve seen many places – especially sites dealing with financial health, ecologically-friendly living, and productivity – explain time and again that getting rid of stuff, and more importantly keeping it gone, is good for you and everyone else too.

However, today I was reading a post over on Get Rich Slowly (here) in which one of JD’s readers mentioned that he was able to really get a hold of his buying habits only when he quit watching TV. He says, “It was only when I quit watching TV for many years that I was able to shake the desire to accumulate stuff. It is insidious.” For many, I think he is probably right.

Lucky me, then, that I have typically been pretty good about avoiding the insidious pull of advertising. I am, frankly, not all that cool, and don’t really care if I am. I tend to think quite a bit before before being convinced that I need something (for instance, I’m happier without power windows then with them, since mine ave never broken). I’ve avoided the temptation to upgrade as well, only replacing cell phones when the old one broke (and still buying the generic model), and still happily living with my relatively ancient, second generation iPod. I think a few people would say that part of my problem is liking advertising too much (I am a big fan of good commercials), and so paying too close attention to the commercials to be moved by their advertising tricks.

Since starting my New Year’s Resolution to save more, I have avoided buying almost anything I didn’t absolutely need, despite the occasional craving to spoil myself. It’s felt good. It leaves me with a question, though.

What does one do if the stuff they do get suckered into buying is never advertised? I could chuck out my TV, but that would just mean I’d miss my favorite shows. No, the things I buy are things like Wind Stuff Now‘s wind generator kits. These are things I buy because I stumble upon them while hunting down my passion of the moment.

I know, I know, the answer is just to not buy them. Force of will. Or else, to buy them but make good use of them so that they are functional, instead of taking up space. I try, I really do.

Sometimes, though, I find that a good windmill is just too hard to pass up.

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