Many people have asked my opinion on whether shopping bans are beneficial or not.
Of course I would say I do think they are beneficial, but they are also very hard. You need a lot of willpower, that most of us don’t have these days.
Our society needs instant gratification and that’s what shopping does for people. Those brave enough to face the challenge of shopping bans have come away with a different approach to living and enjoying life, not to mentioned the joys of saving money.
Sounds like something we all want right?
As idealistic as shopping bans are, many of us get frustrated while venturing on this journey and find themselves quitting.
Defeat never feels good and is quite discouraging when people are trying to change for the better.
There are ways to do shopping bans more leniently, however. For example, before starting the ban, you can write a list of thing you are allowed to buy like a new mattress or one new sweater for winter.
This way, you are not setting yourself up for defeat, you are allowing yourself to still buy what you NEED, but eliminating those wants and impulse buys.
More Flexibility With The One In One Out Rule
An alternative to shopping bans that allows more flexibility while still living minimally is the one in one out rule. I personally live by this rule.
Basically, it’s exactly what it sounds like. When you buy one thing, it means something you already own must go.
For example, if I buy a new wool sweater for the winter season, it means I must get rid of one sweater or clothing item similar to it (could be a long sleeve or cardigan).
By having this rule in mind, you are less likely to go on shopping binges and you truly think about the purpose the item has in your life. Ultimately, it forces you to ask the question, “Do I really need it?”
Overall, I think there is value in both, but never try and restrict yourself to a point where it is unreasonable for your lifestyle.