My USE IT UP strategy may be making some people uncomfortable. I first learned this when I told my friend and coworker Keshia about my theme for the year. I told her that I want to assess what I have and if I don't use it then I need to organize, repair, clean, or give it away so it does get used. She said that if I start giving away my stuff people are going to wonder if something is wrong with me, and that Grannies do that in preparation for the Great Beyond. I assured her that I am just moving some of the excess STUFF out of my space and she seemed OK with that. Frugal February didn't sit so well with her either because we enjoy eating lunch out together, and she felt this was going to put a cramp in her eating plans (neither one of us like to deny ourselves a good meal). Then she remembered that I tend to cook way too much food and would probably be bringing enough to share, so she came around on that too. Later we agreed that we need to institute a monthly potluck at work so we can all enjoy each other's home cooking.
Then when I announced on Facebook that I was wasn't buying anything but groceries and gas in February, a few folks - I'm talking to you Darrel, Shawna and Michelle - started throwing what-ifs and temptations my way, as if I needed their help to find loopholes in my self imposed rules! So what is it about this USE IT UP thing that has people squirming a little? I think that our society has us oriented towards over-consuming, even though this is against our best nature. And that even though we're told (over and over and over by advertisers) that we'll somehow be made happier by that next purchase, our best selves know this isn't true. My throwing out that intention to the universe reminds folks of what they know already - that we have way too much stuff in our lives! And nobody likes a know-it-all so I guess I'm going to quiet down on my USE IT UP frugality and just do it!