Deck The Halls with Unnecessary Things

Tis the season to be shopping.

For the past few weeks, I have noticed a dramatic increase in holiday advertisements.  It seems that every time I turn around, I see a new ad, commercial, or billboard telling me that my holiday won’t be complete unless I have (insert item for sale here).  Its amazing how the daily doses of seasonal marketing influences one’s personal viewpoint of what a holiday “should be”.  In the past, I have been a sucker for making purchases based on what various companies think I need.  But this year,  I’ve had a complete change of heart.

I recently trekked the to local mall with my mom right before Black Friday.  I have always shopped at this mall during the holiday season, so in the beginning it was somewhat nostalgic to be there, seeing all the decorations and hearing the familiar holiday tunes.  However, this happy feeling quickly disappeared and suddenly I was left with a horrible, slightly grungy feeling.  We had one store in mind that my mom wanted to go to, but of course we stumbled in a few others on the way, one of which being my previous “favorite” store.  It was the store that in the past, I could spend hours and hours, as well as hundreds of dollars in every time I went.  I always found way too much stuff that I just had to have.  But this time was different.  Rather than seeing all the things I thought I needed, I in turn saw tons of unnecessary items.  I saw piles of soon-to-be trash due to the short lives of modern clothing.  I had just watched a video earlier that day documenting how much clothing waste is produced and it was utterly sickening.  Apparently, Americans throw away roughly 13 million tons of textiles each year.  Yikes! Walking through the aisles, I couldn’t shake this yucky feeling.

This whole holiday shopping stint was short lived since I just couldn’t shake the excessive, wasteful feeling.  My new frugal and minimalist standpoint has permeated every ounce of my life, as I quickly came to realize that my days of frivolous (holiday) spending were over.  How are you stoking your FIRE during the holidays?

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