November 18, 2010

Extend Buy Nothing Day To The Other 364 Days

Some have called Buy Nothing Day an 'insult to those too poor to be classified as consumers', and 'ineffective' in changing our destructive system. But a day that promotes consuming less and producing less waste is alright by me. Stopping shopping so that we can start living is something I support.

But if all we do is buy nothing on that one day, and fail to change our purchasing behaviour the other 364 days, then the activity IS ineffective. As a tool to increase awareness, BND helps us to do something we might not otherwise do - stop, and question our shopping habits.

We shop for entertainment, or for status, or to feel good. We shop to feed an addiction, or because we are doing what we are told. We may even shop because we are afraid of what will happen to life as we know it if we stop shopping. It is healthy to know what the reasons and motives are for our own patterns of consumption.

Once we begin to figure out why we are consuming so much, we can begin to question why we are working so much. We can ask why we are too busy to raise our kids, or maintain our health, or keep up with friends and family. We can try to figure out why we are always either making money, or spending money. Then we can stop the madness.

Enjoy buying nothing on November 26/27, or any other day of the year, and vow to increase your resistance against capitalist exploitation in the future.

Buy Nothing Day Activities:
  1. Go for a walk in nature.
  2. Make a plan for increasing self-sufficiency.
  3. Figure how much money you might have spent in a day - use it to pay down debt.
  4. Have a Free Garage Sale - enjoy giving stuff away.
  5. Cook your favourite meal - share it with someone.
  6. Commit to a Buy Nothing Christmas.
  7. Do some online research on the negative effects of unchecked capitalism.
  8. Write letters to elected officials demanding action on regulation and sustainability.
  9. Spend time with your family -  play cards, or a board game, or sing, draw, play.
  10. Make it a 'Do Nothing Day', and relax.

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