Buy Nothing New: A Sustainable Living Challenge

There are Ten Guidelines if you’re up to the task:

  1. Be kind to yourself
  2. Buy it used
  3. Bring your own
  4. Get stuff fixed
  5. Buy services and experiences
  6. Support local
  7. Avoid excessive packaging
  8. Stick to the essentials
  9. Use your common sense
  10. Have fun

“Surprisingly (or not),” the BNN blog reads after one writer’s year-long experience with the challenge, “what I learned over the course of the year was that buying nothing new became more about focusing on quality of life rather than quantity of stuff, aka: Living sustainably means living well. The challenge transformed itself into an appreciation for all things minimalist and wholesome by virtue of uncovering a little bit more of my true self, sans accessories.”

“In other words, Buying Nothing New may sound like a superficial task but I assure you, the real work of this journey is an inside job. Thus, I see BNN as a lifelong challenge.” The message is clear. Stripped from the trappings of clamoring for things, those who attempt to abide by the BNN ideals are rewarded with a renewed sense of self, pride in their resourcefulness, and the fulfillment that comes with knowing their carbon footprint is a little smaller.

In a country known for its rampant consumerism, which U.S. city would be the best candidate for a Buy Nothing New campaign for a month? What would be your biggest obstacle undertaking a Buy Nothing New project in your own home? Are you up to the challenge?  Casandra Armour

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