Category Archives: Food and Drinks

Eliminating Consumer Behaviour (Part I)

This is going to be a fairly long post, split into two parts.

The next part of my self improvement adventure is to reduce my consumer behaviour. I already talked a lot about reducing the amount of money I spend on food in an earlier article, but I am going to continue in this vain, reducing my consumer behaviour and increasing my productive behaviours.

What is my motivation for reducing/eliminating my own consumer behaviours?

Western society is fundamentally miserable. We want, want, want. We spend aimlessly and thoughtlessly with no thought for our future. Buy consuming we put more money into the pockets of corporations who seek to influence government legislation and have us buy more and more of their products. Spending money is unfulfilling. Producing content, creating and selling products and improving ourselves is much more fulfilling. I’m sick of seeing those around me consume and I’m sick of seeing some of those traits in myself too. Above all I’m eliminating my consumer behaviours in the hope that I can be a happier person. Apologies if this sounds like a rant – That’s because it is one!

The first step in eliminating my own consumer behaviour is looking at what I consume that can be eradicated or reduced to as little as possible:

  • Clothes
  • Caffeine drinks
  • Social Media
  • Alcohol
  • E-Liquid
  • Time spent in nightclubs/bars
  • Pop culture

Clothes

I will happily admit that I have spent a lot of money on clothes. I own entire collections of various brands. Buying these clothes makes me temporarily happy and I will admit I get a long term enjoyment from wearing nice clothes and people telling me how well dressed I am and asking where they can get the threads I wear. On the negative side I have spent far too much money on clothes and realised the other day that realistically I could go a whole year without having to buy any new clothes, with the exception of suits. I may do just that. People buy clothes because they like the feeling of novelty and guess what? That feeling dries up the longer you have your once new clothes for, so you have to buy more clothes to get that feeling.

Caffeine Drinks

Again, I’m addicted to Diet Coke and am partial to a lot of other junk drinks. I’ve gone four days without a Diet Coke at the time of writing and I honestly cannot remember when I have gone this long without. If each bottle costs £1, I estimate that I am spending somewhere in the region of £350-£500 a year on this addiction alone. That is staggering and unbelievably it’s something I’ve never really thought much about. On the plus side, I own shares in Coke and Pepsi, so…

Social Media

This isn’t really financial consumerism but more of a time sink. I shudder to think about the amount of time my use of social networks adds up too, but it must be a lot. Even checking your Facebook for 20 minutes a day adds up to five days a year spent on Facebook. Most people have Twitter, Instagram, etc. Spend 20 minutes each every day and that’s FIFTEEN DAYS a year spent browsing those sites. I discovered what I call Facebook withdrawal – A sinking feeling that happens when you don’t check your Facebook for several days that I suspect is due to lack of Dopamine and possibly a secondary feeling of “Thank God, I’ve escaped”. Who knows. 120 hours of working even at minimum wage is almost £800. When you think of it like that…

Alcohol

Admittedly, these days I’m not so much of a drinker, but I still spend money on booze and it also causes/encourages a myriad of consumer behaviours such as spending money wastefully, eating crap food and doing nothing. Even buying as little as a four pack a week costs £250 a year. And I know people who drink that much every day.

E-Liquid

E-Liquid costs nothing compared to cigarettes but if you buy expensive liquids it can still add up. For me kicking cigarettes was the start of a renewed interest in consumer behaviour because it is addictive, costly and not good for you; the three characteristics I think makes up so much of reckless consumerism.  I buy all my juice wholesale so I pay about a third of the price and I’m looking at mixing my own juices.

Time spent in nightclubs/bars

I spend a few hours a week at least inside nightclubs and bars. I spend money in these places so I can consume more pussy. That is almost the sole reason I go out. I have plenty of friends and I make plenty of acquaintances and associates anyway. What’s worse is it has held me back from meeting higher quality women because you won’t find quality women in the places I frequent. It’s a harsh truth. When I’m in bars and clubs I’m also spending money on alcohol too. I don’t spend much, but it adds up. Frankly I’ve spent the best part of ten years going out and getting hammered and pulling girls in those kind of environments. I’m bored of it and I don’t want to be hanging out in bars when I’m thirty, either.

Pop Culture

We all consume pop culture on some level. Social networks practically shove it down our throats. The same with mainstream media too. Does anyone in the western World not know about Kim Kardashian fathers sex change? More worryingly I know people who know more about the goings on of the Kardashian family than their own. I’ve never been a big consumer of pop culture but I still watch junk on the Internet from time to time and find myself clicking on pop culture related clickbait. Fuck that.

Part II will be published ASAP.

Spend Money/Gain Weight. Save Money/Lose Weight.

It started a few years ago. Physically I was in the best shape of my life. A year or so of eating right and hitting the gym had paid off. Mentally I was in the worst shape of my life. For all intents and purposes, aside from my investments I was broke. I had lost four members of my family and my long term relationship had ended. I was abusing Weed, Coke and MDMA regularly.

As me and a friend began working 14 hour days forging a business, I let myself fall into a bad way physically. I stopped working out. I stopped running. I stopped taking care of my body. The more money I made the more I spent on food. I would get a takeaway most nights and go out for dinner to a restaurant once or twice a week. In the daytime I would eat and drink garbage. In a year I gained three stone, and lost thousands of pounds in doing so. I estimate some weeks I may well have spent £100 on food and drinks, excluding alcohol. This may seem like a relatively small amount but many people my age struggle don’t have that after working a week once their rent is paid.

I tried various diets and briefly documented my Steak and Eggs diet and although I lost weight it wasn’t good enough. In February I decided to bring my cost of food down to an absolute minimum – £15 a week and do the same with my daily Caloric intake, which I bought down to 1600 calories per day.

Three months later I have saved a fair amount of money and I’m now at a lower BF% than I was before I got myself into this mess. My face isn’t as chiselled as it once was and I don’t have anywhere near the muscle mass I used to have, but we will get there. Once I’m happy – The goal is ten stone and I’m at 11 now – we’ll move onto the next challenge: How to save money and gain mass.

Dish of the Week – Shakshouka

A noble first attempt. (Note the lack of a skillet)

Just another short post I’m afraid.

One of the things I miss a lot from the old forums is some of the recipes and food ideas that people used to post. As part of my current self-improvement programme I’m going to cook a new dish every week that I’ve never cooked before, this week I cooked Shakshouka. Continue reading Dish of the Week – Shakshouka