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Buy only what you need

The problem for our contemporaries generations, is to buy without reflection.

I’m the first to do it!

Or at least I was the first to do it. Today before each purchase, I am taking 15 minutes of reflection and I ask myself 3 questions:

  1. How can I do without this purchase?
  2. Can I make it by hand or get it second hand?
  3. Will my life be enriched by this purchase?

A friend told me yesterday that we make money at the time of purchase and not when it is resold. It is the same for the restriction of purchase. Why just do not happen things that will end up in a drawer?

With the D.I.Y, I also learned that everything that is sold has more or less known a prototype, made by hand before its industrialization. So why not make yours?

I also learned that we take more care of what was reusable and even more of what we had created. So why not try the D.I.Y adventure?

But that’s not the main topic, let’s go back to our wallet.

By trying bartering, second hands, handmade manufacturing but also to give or sell what we do not need anymore, we also do housework in our head and we simplify our life.

How many of you have spent hours searching for an object, buried under other unused objects?

This treasure hunt is one of our biggest stresses in our homes and our subconscious, he knows how much these objects exist, even when we do not look for them.

If everything had a place and we were giving or exchanging useless things in our homes, then our life would be half as simple.

Let’s take together an example of purchase contracted on the stroke of emotion and not with reflection (Most of the time, at least in my case initially):


I touch there a sensitive point of our frenzy of uncontrolled purchase. We are in societies that always ask us for more and more papers, whereas the current state of the planet would rather encourage us to the contrary.

It does not matter, “Business is Business”, words are not acting.

Do we need a printer at home, a scanner or even a fax? Are we as bureaucratically important to allow ourselves to enrich an economic model that works against the planet and against our wallet?

You will understand that I do not close the door to this often useful industry, but I just want to ask the questions for my personal case, do I need to print at home?

Minimalism is also about getting rid of electronic objects that serve only very little and can be replaced.

A small list “questions versus questions” to get us thinking:

  1. Can I do without the scanner? – Why not use the phone’s camera and great dedicated apps? GOOGLE / APPLE Let’s try and see the result. (A digital camera is also very good). Most of our scanned documents are destined for an ever greater bureaucracy in need of evidence to discourage you, if the governments of several countries, even for sensitive issues like If immigration accepts photo-based scans, why would your insurance refuse them? Use technology to make obsolete big devices that play against your wallet and the space in your home.
  2. Can I do without the printer and its ridiculously expensive ink cartridges? Do I really need to print this document and if so how many times a year do I have the same obligation to print? We no longer speak to our local stores as our elders in time, but let us not be nostalgic but just pragmatic. Let’s just search for print locations in our neighborhood! For any administrative document, go for free at the town hall, in the offices of your elected officials, or at the post office and ask them to print your documents previously put on a USB key, even if today a large part can be sent by email thankfully. But do not buy ink and printer for administrative papers to send, they do not deserve it and should instead offer us the opportunity to respect the environment by making strong commitments like paperless.
  3. How are my ink cartridges, recycled? – In which bin or container to recycle my cartridges? I went to the garbage dump two months ago, before separating from my printer (Offered at the recycling center, to find another owner, an association could also need it, find out), in short, I ask the agents where can I put my cartridges? He answers me in the trash! So I took my cartridges by doing a search on the internet. And locally in Whistler (Where I live now) I found this link, so I invite people deciding to keep their printer to put in relation with think-food, which recycles your ink cartridges is donated to the food bank profits realized. You will find their contact information in this link here. If you do not live near Vancouver, I invite you to search on the internet, how to recycle your ink cartridges.

Of course, minimalism is not about denying technology or evolution, but about using it pragmatically. Most objects that intrude into our home, are more of a dust-nest and stressor, than anything else.

How much can you save by printing only if you do not have a choice, locally at a nearby business or institute?

If you want to take stock today like me, then you will have the opportunity to remove a big thorn, do not even talk about printers that forbid you to print in black and white if you do not change a cartridge color ink. Would not everything be organized to rob us of money? Let’s be more cunning than them and do otherwise.

This example is mine, I do not want to target anyone or judge anyone, everyone must decide how he wants to manage his life, this reflection is based on the steps I took, to become minimalist and simplify my life.

I use the same thinking about all my purchases and the items I own to better organize my life and use my money differently.

So, would you buy a new printer tomorrow at only $ 45, with an annual purchase of more than $ 200 / year of hard-to-recycle ink cartridges?

The theory of the cheap razor and its priceless blades… The world of printing has organized it for us without any shame.

As far as I’m concerned, I shave old-fashioned with easily recyclable blades and print only when I need it by making the local shopkeeper work, I refuse the papers to the maximum and use the evolution to send numerically everything that is possible for me.

The benefits observed by my thoughtful purchases:

  1. More money to use for traveling (in my case)
  2. Less stress and no headaches
  3. More simplicity
  4. Better socialization by making local businesses work
  5. Less paper, less dust and more time
  6. More space in my home
  7. A better organization of things
  8. No more treasure hunts of horror
  9. Fewer waves and electronics around me
  10. The pride of serving future generations and the planet (humbly of course)

BONUS: Also make beautiful letters with your own ink, & glass dip pen, do not print anymore and be creative.

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