Most people believe that the more you get into minimalism the less materialistic you become. In my case, the lack of spirituality left a hole that I still haven’t found how to fill. So instead of avoid materialism I’m becoming true materialistic, well, that is a placeholder until I find a better name. I mean, I try to find the real value of things I own. And, in addition, I prefer to just have a handful of high quality items that follow my values.
A long time ago I stop buying things in dollarstores, because of the low quality. You can find that low quality in other places too.
I understand the convenience of having a wide range of prices and qualities for a product. If you want to play tennis is great that you can find an affordable entry level racket, not as good as the pros but not as expensive too. To me it is OK but only if you can explain the lower price because the materials are not as good or the manufacturing process is less rigorous but I don’t want to get a cheap product as a result of bad jobs, bad wages or, of course, child labour.
Because the big corps never loose money and if you get something that seems to be way cheaper than it should be is because somebody has paid that difference from his or her own salary.
That is the main reason I want to learn to appreciate the real value of the stuff and be able of knowing if the price match its value. And here enters minimalism. As a minimalist you need less things so you can take your time to analyze the way it is manufactured, where it is produced and, even the ethics of the company that makes it.
So when I look for something on amazon and find a cheap one, instead of click on add to basket*, as I used to do, I google it to get that relevant info. If that info follows my rules I buy it but if in the process there are some doubts then I look for another one, maybe more expensive, and loop through this entire process until I’m really convinced.
It may sound a bit extravagant to you but this change aims to support companies that are in their business not only for the money. And there is nothing intrinsically wrong with making money. You will always need some products, and people deserve to be paid for their work, but I don’t want to have a better life as a result of the suffering of somebody from a remote place. I don’t want to take part of that game.
By the other hand, low quality items need to be replaced frequently and that has a side effect on the environment, the one that we’ll pass to our descendants.
The quality of the materials, the impact of getting them from the environment, or the way you can recycle them whenever something doesn’t work anymore are some key aspects to consider when you have to buy something.
So understand that I’m not a kind of true materialism warrior, but I really believe that in a world where new things come faster than ever it is very convenient to keep calm, have a deep breath, and wait a second in order to make the right choice, leaving money on a second plane, because money is only useful to get services or products, so you’ll spend the money in the end.
Take care and make good choices whenever you buy something and, even better, don’t buy nothing you don’t need.