November 19, 2022

Retreating From a Life of Mindless Consumerism

Here is one thing about simple living that a lot of people don't know. It's hard. Here is another. It is awesome.

Let's face it - cooking everything you eat from scratch is hard. Cutting open the toothpaste tube when it seems to be empty in order to squeeze out 10 more brushes is hard. 

Growing and preserving your own food is hard. Riding a bike instead of owning a car is hard. Repairing your stuff instead of replacing it is hard.

It would be much easier to retreat to a life of mindless consumerism and its endless conveniences, short cuts, and commercial coddling. 


There must be good reasons that so many people on the planet have adopted mindless consumerism as a way of life. 

The biggest reason must be that it seems easier to work for the system, then let that same system swaddle you in so much stuff that you might as well be in a Matrix pod, the ultimate in easy (not so good for freedom, however).

You may not ultimately find happiness in a bigger house filled with more stuff, but it seems easier than living with less.

But is it really? Participating in the work/buy/repeat system is no cake walk either. If it were, wouldn't we be happier than we are?

We need to retreat from our retreat into lives of mindless consumerism before it ends us all.

Now is a good time to chuck all of that, and return to the authentic simple lives that we enjoyed before buying into our new roles as worker/consumer/pod people hooked into the convenience life support system.

I would rather live a harder more awesome life with less than a harder downgraded existence bound by and dependent upon the convenience of mindless consumerism.

Breaking out of the pod and living with less is hard, but I can't think of a more rewarding and satisfying way to live.


  1. Anonymous11/22/2022

    So thankful for this post. I was falling into the idea I "needed" to go shopping for some craft materials, when I have so much NOW to use that it would be silly to buy more. But the consumerism disease was grabbing hold of me...I was even all dressed and about to walk out the door when I thought "what am I doing??" and thankfully turned around and stayed home. Your writing here helped remind me that mindless consumerism is a disease -- so watch out! And yes, I cut my toothpaste tubes - and any other tube item (hand lotion, etc) - to use up the very last of it. Thanks again for the post! - Mary

    1. Brava! The whole "recreational shopping" thing has always bewildered me. I also perform life-extending surgery on tubes and lotion bottles. My next project is to eliminate as much new plastic coming into my home as possible - can't to a thing about what is already here except do my best to keep it from ending up in a landfill for as long as possible (I frequently tell my middle-age children I have ziplock bags older than they are - slight exaggeration but gets the point across). And, yes, I wholeheartedly agree, it is a disease, endemic and dangerous.


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