‘Clothing the Loop’ — Sorting used clothing for recycling. Image: Unsplash

The Accumulation Prerequisite

Flaws in modern humanity result in the inability to own less without first accumulating more.

Accumulation is owning a mass or quantity of something that has gradually been gathered or acquired.

There are two main reasons why this is the case.

  1. To want more is a human belief in one's happiness and fulfilment. Without more means, you are at a loss, that is without something. Yes, if not one it's the other. I would go as far as to say most people can convince themselves that they need and must have something, no matter how worthless, pointless, or wasteful a thing maybe. Modern living tells us not having and going without will be detrimental to ourselves, we will miss out and someone else will benefit. Clever marketing and advertising has convinced us of this fact. Or have they, how strong is your willpower to say no?
  2. Without first experiencing accumulation humans struggle to understand and have a perspective of what does and doesn't hold significant worth.

Modern living is based on the security of owning more.

Less fills us with FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) syndrome.

When does accumulation and the need to own more become excess consumerism?

Google ‘Prerequisite’ and you will find, “A prerequisite is a required prior condition. If something is required in advance of something else, like if you have to take a beginning Spanish class before signing up for Spanish II, then it’s a prerequisite.”

Endeavouring to understand the balance and harmony of owning less, is it possible to do so without first owning too much? Human nature accumulates, we do — we collect. Hunting and gathering it’s our nature —from the beginning of time.

The problem resides in the number of humans alive at any one time paralleled with the degree of each humans accumulation. The results are at an unsustainable level of excess consumerism, waste, emissions from transport, unsustainable use of resources and unethical workplace conditions to support this overproduction!

Modern humans feel satisfaction in buying, the hunt, the spending, the excitement of something new. We tell ourselves we need it, we are happy when we buy, spend, we must buy and spend or we will be left out.

Very few people are born being satisfied with saying no to consumerism without first accumulation.

Those who do enjoy owning less, and easily say no to more without FOMO have reached a plateau in their lives. The freedom of living life mindfully and consciously trumps being surrounded by things and stimuli.

Can we only understand the bliss of owning less through first owning too much?

Accumulation is a necessary prerequisite to the freedom of owning less.

What triggers accumulation transformation?

  • Growing up in a hoarder house
  • Subjection to extreme consumerism, through the workplace, or home living
  • Experiencing waste anxiety — feel like an excursion to the landfills anyone?
  • Educational awakening

Changing habits is challenging, but achievable. Enjoying less and saying no to excess is only a habit after all. A solution to clothing consumerism in crisis is a capsule wardrobe. It's a straightforward strategy with many benefits; purpose buying, owning less, saving money, stress, time and increasing personal style are some. The time for change is right now, today, this moment, change your consumer habits.

Satisfaction in reducing, reusing and refusing — is a big win in conscious ecology. You are taking control of environmental change.

Spend your money wisely, support products and services that deserve to thrive.

Change your mindset, you don’t really need that new plastic-wrapped and all plastic piece of crap that is enviably going to end up in landfill even though $2.99 is such a saving! Save the $2.99 there is no bargain to be had.

Accumulation, unnecessary and excess consumption needs to stop, join the herd.






Seeking a more sustainable future. Writing about fashion style + sustainability. 🌿 Careers at net-a-porter and over a decade at Vogue. My site: www.ownmuse.com

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Harper | OwnMuse

Harper | OwnMuse

Seeking a more sustainable future. Writing about fashion style + sustainability. 🌿 Careers at net-a-porter and over a decade at Vogue. My site: www.ownmuse.com

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