‘We have to learn to live with less’.
If you've spent time around people who are trying to make a difference in the world, you'll have heard this one before. It’s always the same refrain.
‘We have to get off this crazy consumerist roundabout that is polluting the planet, driving us to distraction, and filling our lives with junk! We have to learn to spend less, purchase and consume less, want and desire less!’
We’re all about conscious commerce at The Merrier. We're 100% on board with slow fashion, healthy lifestyles, and sustainable living. But this talk of spending less, purchasing and consuming less, wanting and desiring less…
Can I be honest? It sounds like living less to me.
Let's flip the narrative. Instead of wanting and consuming less, we need to dedicate ourselves to wanting and demanding more - much more.
Markets are not evil. Consumption is not inherently bad. Unless we're living off the grid and growing our own food, we all need to go shopping sooner or later.
What if we decided to shop for something more? That's how we flip the paradigm. We need to open our minds to the counterintuitive idea of saving the planet by wanting and consuming more.
What do we want more of?
We want to help more ethical SMEs breaking into the big time. We want to make these brands a soaring succcess, so that we can end people’s addiction to fast fashion and other unsustainable practices, transform markets and clean up the mess capitalism's made of the planet.
We want to see more people purchasing from these brands. We want to see more conscious consumption. Instead of consuming less, people should be consuming more - more ethical products that do good in the world, boosting the profts of ethical brands and consigning the toxic, polluting, unsustainable products of yesteryear to the recycling bins of history.
Do good products solve problems. This is why we need more of them.
That stainless steel drinking bottle you purchased - it keeps plastic out of the sea. Show it off to your friends. People should purchase more of them.
The sustainably sourced ingredients in your vegan protien powder - it ensures animals live happy lives and arable land is used for crops, not killing fields. Share the purchase on your socials. Help the brand sell more.
That ethical supply chain certified fashion item you purchased - it contributes to stamping out sweatshop labour, while putting money in the pockets of designers and seamstresses who give a damn about people and the planet. Let's have more of that!
You see how this works. We don't change the world just by saying 'no' to products we don't like. We need to build a new world by saying yes to products we want to see more of.
We need to want more, desire more, expect more, and consume more of these ethical products that made a difference. We need to build the fortunes of brands that sell for more.
This is how we change capitalism. It begins by saying 'yes' to more.