I'm not the first person to challenge them self is some way. Proving that point is Judith Levine, author of Not Buying It; My Year Without Shopping. I just started reading this book this morning and am on just chapter three but it has so far been quite interesting. Judith attempted to go a whole year with just buying what she needed. Not only does she highlight what their true needs are (are Kleenex a need or a want? If Kleenex is a need, are the plush ones with lotion on them a need or should you make do with the cheap scratchy ones?) but also highlights what type of consumers we Americans are. For example, we are just 4.5 percent of the world's population and yet we use 24 percent of it's resources. In one study conducted 78 percent of participants stated that most Americans are "very materialistic", and yet only 8% considered themselves very materialistic.
I'll be very curious to finish the book and see if she was able to last the whole year and what she learned from it.