Boredom is a powerful tool. It’s jumpstarted a lot of my interests: granola, calligraphy, bullet journaling. Some stuck, like bullet journaling. Others didn’t. My most recent boredom has propelled me to further my ideas in conscious consumption towards minimalism, zero waste, and natural living.
I’ve written about my ideas on conscious consumption before. I was raised to believe in the importance of a couple of concepts: being a good steward of the Earth and living simply, so others may simply live. Those are set in sharp contrast with the consumerism that the American media typically spouts. While this year has been many things (to say the least), my frustration, anxieties, and downright sadness set me up perfectly for that siren song of consumerism. If I bought this dress, I’d feel pretty and confident and pampered. Sure, a new lipstick could just be the temporary band-aid patched over my ever-growing feeling of loneliness. It sucked me in, but then my boredom kicked in and I finally turned to watching house decorating vlogs on Youtube. Which led me to the minimalist ones. Which led me to the vegan, minimalist ones. Which led me to the zero waste, vegan, minimalist ones. And at that point, basically everything is natural. And made out of coconut oil, white vinegar, and Dr. Bronner’s castille soap, purchased in bulk at a Whole Foods in Colorado.
After my accidental research, I came to see zero waste, minimalism, and natural living as all tied together. As I started trying to live lower waste, my goal was a small reduction of my waste, which naturally required reducing my consumption and reconsidering why I had filled my room with things. When I thought about ways to reduce my skincare waste and consumption, I was led to more natural, basic ingredients. I tie it all together under my earlier term, conscious consumption: shopping my values, reducing what I want to what I need, lessening my burden on the Earth. Minimalism connects with my previous ideas about conscious consumption and my belief that we really don’t need more stuff. Zero waste resounds with my ideas of being a good steward of the Earth. Fewer pieces of trash clogging the rivers. Less waste speckling the land. Natural living is part of my experiment to pollute less with unnatural chemicals and use simpler, more basic products. Can the same ingredients I have in my kitchen work to clean and moisturize my face? Let’s see!
I want to try to be zero waste and minimalist. Especially minimalist. I’ve acquired some junk this year, and while I packed this year to move, once again, cross country, I wished I had fewer things. Only the things that really mattered and served their purpose better than anything else that I had found. Not the twelve (twelve!) lipsticks that make me no happier. Because after all, I’m not a dragon. I have no need to pile up my junk and sit on it.