I realize that though I am attempting to not spend money on things I don’t need, I have not changed how I speak about spending.
When I am chatting with family or friends, often the topic of items for purchase comes up, like ” I saw this great deal at..”, or “there’s a sale on…” or ” There’s this really cute…”. You get the idea. I happily launch into my old routine, talking about things as though I am going to be, or thinking about, buying them.
Is there anything wrong with that? I suppose not, so long as it remains firmly in fantasy land. But there are two concerns here: one, that in talking as though a purchase is a real consideration, I start to feel like it is and so it feeds my desire to purchase. And two, I continue to not inform my family and friends of my resolution by participating in those topics, thus I do not garner the kind of support I really need.
I also find myself hesitant to change my language because I don’t want to be a ‘Debbie Downer’. If I can’t join in on the talk about things we like, desire and want, do I have anything interesting to add to the conversation? Probably not. I would have to change the subject entirely. A hard one indeed, because I’m not trying to shame or curtail anyone’s spending but my own.
Also, it is just habit to talk about deals. Spending has been a big part of my adult life, and desiring neat things and enjoying the hunt for a deal is very set in my psyche.
All those reasons (excuses) given, I think that I will try to change how I speak about shopping and consuming in general. Not only do I need to stop talking about deals as though I am going to take part in them, but I also need to respect what I do have and stop referring to things I actually do need to purchase as “too expensive” or a “rip off” because that too has been a part of my language and mind-set. Respect for what I do need and have; respect for the value of what I need and have.
That all said, I walked into a Ross today in search of socks with sticky dots on the bottom in anticipation of taking my first Dailey Method class.
There was an astonishing array of socks, in every sport name brand you can imagine. I had to ask, more than once, is there a big enough spending population to support such a multitude of socks? Where do un-purchased socks go? Is this crazy excessive or what?
In the end I walked out empty handed as there was not a single ‘sticky dot’ sock to be had. I wandered all the aisles of clothing, considered a few items to see what my desire level for them was. I was aware that I needed work-out leggings as well, but decided that if I were to get a pair I wouldn’t settle for just any, they would have to be something I really liked so as to ensure I get a lot of good use out of them.
I ended up purchasing some leggings online with a small twinge of guilt as I questioned the validity of my “need”. I even stopped mid purchase to go into my bedroom and comb through my pants shelf. I considered sticking with the few I already possess, but then thought about how ill-fitting they are, how one of them actually pulls my underwear down as I wear them, how I look at them and don’t want to wear them, how I haven’t worn them. Also, for the specific use I require them for, they not only have to stay on my body, but also wick sweat and lots of it. So, I went ahead and purchased two leggings from Costco online, and then purged 5 pairs of pants/leggings that have wallowed in my drawers for a while now “in case” I needed them.
Part of this purge and sort process is to keep getting rid of things that do not “spark joy” as the KonMari method suggests I do. I really like this assessment method. And as I clear, I may or may not replace items on an as-needed basis. I’m hoping I will err more on the side of not replacing as I discover that I truly don’t “need” much.
Actually, getting rid of those unused pants felt really good. I think I’m going to go do a little bit more of that right now…