The Secondhand Life


I want to talk about this book a bit, especially in light of my last post and before I post some actual practical advice to help us conquer the consumerism mindset. 

This book was eye opening and not in the ways that I expected! 

I expected gloom and doom. I expected guilt trips and wake up calls. I expected to be convicted to stop buying anything of any sort at anytime. 

Instead I was assured that buying new now and then is key to keeping up the economy, and I was very encouraged by the life that second hand goods take on if they don't sell in stores like Goodwill or Savers. 

After a certain amount of time, things that don't sell in second hand stores head to second hand outlet stores where product is sold by the bag or by the pound. This was totally new information for me, and coincidentally not a week after I finished the book, one of my favorite bloggers posted on this very thing! Take a look at Dina's blog, or for some video footage, check out her Instagram story highlight titled Goodwill Bins. 

If goods aren't sold from the outlets, much of it is put into giant shipping bins which are sold world wide. It turns out that people from all over the world make their living by selling our second hand stuff. People around the world appreciate being able to get these goods at affordable prices. 

People across the globe repair and recycle second hand goods until they can't be used any more. Appliances are repaired or disassembled to use parts in other appliances, or those parts are recycled. Clothing is reused and recycled until it gets made into rags. Literally, there was an entire chapter on the rag industry! 

Unfortunately, there is something that is hindering the life of second hand goods and causing massive amounts of waste on our planet. 

Consumers today, want the newest and latest of everything. Manufacturers are meeting that demand with fast made, low quality product. The saying, "they don't make 'em like they used to" is truth. The quality of goods has diminished so much that appliances often are actually unrepairable if they break, and clothing is such poor quality that even rag makers won't use it for rags! 

These poor quality goods are now piling up with nowhere to go. 

Our acceptance of cheap, low quality goods to meet our "need" for the latest and greatest is affecting the livelihood of others, and it's ruining the earth. 

Believe me readers, I have gone through every excuse to justify MY acceptance of cheap goods. But, if I actually examine my heart and mindset, it isn't justifiable. It comes down to me being discontent with what I have and impatient, either to save up for something of higher quality or to wait/search for that perfect second hand quality item. 

I am discontent and impatient. These are hard truths to face. 

Okay. I PROMISE my next post will be practical applications to help conquer the consumerism mindset. Every blogger needs some soapbox posts, right? 

Stay tuned...


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