When people cease to be impressed by your material possessions, looks and charity work, what do you turn to for validation? How about the things you don’t do? Carefully clearing every pleasure and convenience from your life, and wearing this sacrifice as a badge of honour, is a great way to bolster an otherwise lacking personality. In 2018, giving up is the new going out, and the new puritans aren’t suffering in silence: they want you to know all about it.
I wrote a piece having a gentle dig at the evangelical cult of giving things up and then banging on about out it for all eternity. It’s in the Guardian Weekend magazine today, but you can read it online too.