#LiveMoreWithLess month – 9 days in

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use your local lilbrary during livemorewithless month zero waste weekHow is your #LiveMoreWithLess month going?

I admit it was tougher than I thought for the first week. I found myself going to buy something and had to stop and ask “Do I really need this?”

And on a couple of occasions I’d come home with something before asking the question. ( A cafetiere to replace the one we use daily which had broken and a couple of items of food, in case you’re wondering).

I’ve realised how many habits we do automatically, without thinking.

But it’s getting easier now and I’m relishing the challenge of reducing expenses and unnecessary spending.

In fact if I see something I might like, I’m now writing it on a list and I’ll use it to put any requests in when people ask me what I want for Birthday / Christmas. I can never think of anything, so this could be a useful tactic for me. It also gives me to time to consider whether I really want that thing at all! So often we THINK we want something, but when we walk away and give it some consideration, we don’t at all.

I’ve also come to realise that we live in an instant gratification society. I’m not even that mainstream; I work from home, don’t tend to visit places like the cinema, don’t read the newspapers and don’t have a TV. So advertising doesn’t reach me as much as most people.

But I still get emails, read blogs, subscribe to newsletters – many of which are prompting me to purchase something. I still get lured by the promise of something that will enhance my life, but I keep reminding myself of the startling statistic from Annie Leonard’s “Story Of Stuff” – that only 1% of the stuff we buy is still in use six months later.

That’s a sobering fact isn’t it?

My top tip then for this month is for those of you who are book lovers! Several people tweeted me aghast at the fact they might have to give up reading for a month. I love my community library for several reasons – not least that you can read as many books as you like for free. I can borrow up to 20 books for three weeks at no cost. Even I can’t get through as many as that! You can swap books with friends if you don’t have a local library of your own and if all else fails, there are several websites that offer completely free books to read online. So no need to give up your bookworm habits at all!

I’d love to hear how you are getting on. What is on your ‘essentials’ list? What have you said no to? What are your success stories?

Rachelle Strauss
Rachelle Strauss

Rachelle Strauss is founder of MyZeroWaste.com and ZeroWasteWeek.co.uk Both are leading websites for helping householders reduce landfill waste. Her work has attracted media stories and engagement in documentaries, film and radio both locally and abroad.

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