I am trying to notice more when I have the desire to buy stuff, and ask more questions about why I want to do that. Do I really need to buy the thing? I am trying to notice when I already have the things I need, and fight the impulse to seek more, more, more consumer goods.

One pattern I have noticed is that sometimes the desire to purchase another thing comes up when I am facing a situation I am already solving in some other way, but less than perfectly.

For example, my office where I work from home is now on the second floor of our house, and the kitchen is on the first floor. In our old house, kitchen and office were much closer, and it was no trouble to make a couple trips with various beverages and snacks. But now, sometimes I want to make a single trip on the stairs, but have too many items to carry at once. I need a tray. I have several items that could do this job - a metal baking sheet would work, for instance, but I also have a couple trays that are designed to be just trays. They are both rather large and have handles. They are doing the job!

I found myself thinking, hmm, it would sure be nice if I had a tray that was a little smaller - more perfectly sized to the things I typically find myself wanting to carry upstairs to my desk. And my new tray could even have a pretty pattern, perhaps, rather than being plain like my current trays.

I could probably find such a tray for fairly cheap, brand new. I could even find one at a thrift store, probably! But I could also keep using the trays that I have, which are in fact doing a fine job at being trays. For now, I am going to practice ignoring the discomfort of feeling like some other product (which I don't have) could be meeting my needs in a more beautiful or perfectly optimized way.

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