Back in 2007, I was exposed to the idea of off-consumption by Gaurav Mishra. I have since then reduced my carbon footprint to a great amount. I own 2 Ably T-shirts which don't need to be washed and hence don't tear easily and lasts years, reducing the landfills and wastage of water. I hardly shop for anything, unless it is really necessary. I don't take stuff even when it is free. I still remember the look on the NUS B-School staff, when I refused to take the free NUS branded umbrella on the first day of orientation. She said "But why, this is good quality". I responded "But I already have an umbrella".
Off-consumption is good. But what is even better is Value Maximization of a product. It is closely related to off-consumption. In Value Maximization, you constantly pass the product to a person who gets the most value out of it.
My brother bought me the a Slackline in 2008. I used it quite regularly. When I moved on from the habit, it rotted in a corner in my apartment. I found a slackline enthusiast and gave it to her. She used it regularly. I left to China to do my MBA. During that time, another friend asked her if he could take that slackline, as it was more economical in terms of weight than his own slackline.
He then took this slackline to Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand etc. Then back in the US of A, he gave it to his brother and that guy took it to Switzerland, Germany etc.
My slackline has been to 12 countries in the last 9 years. It has had 5 different owners and it has been used a lot more than it would have had I kept it with me.
The idea is to give away things you own as soon as you realize you won't be using it for the next 3-6 months. I constantly take a look at my room and find things which I haven't used for a month. Then I see if I would use it in the next 5 months. If I won't then I will find someone who will and give it to them.
Many a times things I have handed out have passed many hands and come back to me when I needed them again. Like my Rock climbing finger strengthening pro-grip tool. I have given it away many a times and it always comes back to me after 6 months or a year.