Minimalism and sustainability are intrinsically linked. The UN released that according to latest projections, the global population could grow to around 8.5 billion in 2030, 9.7 billion in 2050. The equivalent of almost three planets could be required to provide the natural resources needed to sustain current lifestyles. Minimalism is not a radical lifestyle it is a way to shift our mindset to see quality over quantity. The problem today is not consumption, it is over-consumption. Minimalism is a tool which will allow us to break free from our consumption obsessed society.
Too often deep meanings and values are attached to our belongings. Focusing on simple, necessary purchases allows us to achieve freedom from chasing empty fulfilment. The buzz we get after purchasing something new is short-lived and empty. Buying often allows us to disconnect from where our products came from. Were they produced ethically? Are they contributing to the climate crisis? Has it been made in fair working conditions? Minimalism allows for thought-led, ethical consumption.
Thought-led consumption is key to achieving a sustainable lifestyle. Minimalism is the perfect way to transition to a sustainable lifestyle. Minimalism is spending money with a clear intention. Waste is a huge barrier to sustainability and minimalism exists to combat wasteful consumption. Products we purchase on a whim use an incredible amount of resources, energy, and materials. If we purchase using a minimalistic approach we can think about our need for the product, the energy used to create it and the impact our purchase is causing to the environment. Buying less awards us the opportunity to buy better and have more consideration for environmentally safe products. Products which are made using sustainable methods or companies which offset the energy used by planting trees or donating to sustainable charities.
Misusing resources for our over-consumption has put a strain on our planet. Companies which acknowledge this show selling products and being sustainable can co-exist and are necessary for the future of our planet. Structured consumption allows us as individuals to make a difference. This means buying from ethical brands and only buying what is necessary. LEO’s Box is a perfect example of sustainable structured consumption as it only contains sustainable products and is a monthly service so eliminates random, sporadic over-purchasing. Our spending is a symbol of us voting for what we would like to consume. By supporting ethical, sustainable businesses and paring back our excessive purchasing we can show bigger brands what is expected and play our part in protecting the planet.
This was written by Shauna Finnegan – a very kind Student studying Business Studies in Dublin City University, passionate about the planet, ethical business practices and sustainable supply chains.