It’s been a while since I read this book, back in April/May to be exact. I have been undecided as to whether to write a review about it or not. When I read the title and the front cover of the book it sounded like it would be more about learning to live without the desire to acquire stuff than it actually turned out to be. The blurb on the cover read ~ “My JOURNEY from ADDICTION and OVERCONSUMPTION to a SIMPLER, HONEST LIFE.”
The book certainly was about overconsumption in the form of addictions to alcohol, cigarettes, food, work of relationships but the section of the book dedicated to overconsumption of material goods was quite a short one. Nevertheless there is a lot to be learned from this book and I feel it is well worth the read.
In her own words TV news journalist Jane Velez-Mitchell tells about her life, her overindulgences and her journey of self-discovery. The first issue she addresses is her addiction to alcohol. She then applies the 12 steps program she learns at Alcoholics Anonymous to the other areas in her life that were out of control. The chapter on material overconsumption begins like this…
“For some addicts, the substance of choice is alcohol. For others, it’s drugs, For still other, it’s food. But there’s one addiction that virturally all of us share. You and I and nearly all Americans are hooked on things.
We’ve been conditioned to identify ourselves as consumers. We are constantly being indoctrinated to buy, buy, buy. And we’re all “drinking the Kool-aid”! It’s a cult I’m fighting to escape, But it’s hard. There are guards at the exits. And they have instructions from the powers that be: Don’t let anybody out! “
She talks about how overconsumption is affecting the environment and the changes she has made to lesson her own carbon footprint.
She also writes about her switch to veganism, her work against animal cruelty and about her coming out as gay. As you can tell she has certainly faced some challenges in her life and it is a credit to her how she has managed to overcome them right in the public spotlight and continues to work at her sobriety of all her vices.
Like I said, this book really is worth the read even if your addiction is only a mild one to material possessions. What Jane learnt and you can too is that the same rules of acceptance, forgiveness and action can be applied to overcome any vice. If she could conquer the mammoth challenges she faced what excuse do you or I have to balk in the face of a little decluttering and conscientious consumerism.
Today’s Mini Mission
Declutter the surfaces of your fridge, both vertical and horizontal.
Today’s Declutter Item
This is one more craft item decluttering during my big craft area minimisation. I have other cutting mats so this one was excess to my needs. It may be a while yet until you see the last of the decluttered craft items. Considering how much I reduced the area of my craft space I should think the items would take some time to pass through as items of the day on the blog.
Something I Am Grateful For Today
The perfect clothes drying day. Plenty of sunshine and a bit of a breeze. Three loads all dried on the line today in winter using an front loading washing machine.
“In daily life we must see that it is not happiness that makes us grateful, but gratefulness that makes us happy.” Brother David Steindl-Rast