Learning to live with less means we need to recognise where our money goes, and what our strongest consumer desires are. Once we know what it is we need to fight, we can strategise accordingly.
For some, fashion will be a serious expenditure, or gadgets and technology. Other value their music or DVD collections. For me personally, the urge to own and to aquire books is stronger than anything else. As I learn to live with less, I am facing the fact that I’m never going to have the personal library I would like.
It’s not that I can’t afford books. The whole point of making wealth history is that I can afford them, that I have every right to buy them, but as a matter of principle I won’t, because I don’t need that personal library.
Instead, I’m instituting a few strategies. For the benefit of those who also feel the pull towards the bookshop, they are as follows:
- Not buying any more books until I’ve read the ones I already have.
- Use the library. I expect most of us take this amazing public resource for granted.
- Buy second hand. London is handy for this, with used book shops all over the place. And if you need something obscure, Amazon has extensive used listings these days.
- Mooch – I might talk about BookMooch again sometime, because I think they’re a great example of how the internet can be used to exchange, share, and just give stuff away.