It’s been an interesting week and I have much to share. First, I am excited to inform you that I was recently interviewed by the online magazine Be Global Fashion Network. I had the opportunity to share my thoughts about the future of fashion, especially as it relates to Fast Fashion and sustainable clothing. You can read the interview here:
I did a bit of reflection this week on where I currently am and where I’d like to see myself going (as it relates to shopping). I realize I am in such a better place than a year ago, and have made much progress with understanding why I shop, what triggers me and different tools to use to manage the shopping urges when they arrive. Still, I would like to do better. I would like to live more simply than I do currently. When I wrote the post on the consequences of shopping, I left out one huge consequence…CLUTTER! We need to find places to put all the stuff we buy and often we cram stuff in closets, drawers, cabinets, and under the bed…often forgetting exactly what we already have. I plan on de-cluttering my house room by room and hope to write a series of decluttering posts about how I achieve this. I’m going to need to do a quick "refresher" skim through Marie Kondo’s tidying up book.
Moving on to this week’s shopping update…
After my recent J.Crew shopping binge, I ended up returning the majority of everything I purchased. I kept the leopard bag and the Burgundy vest. This led me to take a moment to think about the biggest triggers that urge me to shop and what I might be able to do to avoid these triggers. It’s hard to “avoid” emotions, but I have been working on accepting emotions, and managing them in other ways besides a shopping trip. I am crocheting, watching shows I love, increasing my exercise (i’ve added in a daily stretching routine which has been great), and reading. There are still times when I just want to shop, and for those times I am keeping a list of what I am desiring. I’m not saying that I won’t buy it…I just won’t buy it right now. I am practicing pausing and this week it has worked well for me. Time passes and with that the urge passes and suddenly the item I was craving doesn’t seem so important anymore. My closet is really very full right now…not overfilled, but there are plenty of beautiful things in there to wear.
While eating breakfast, I started flipping through a Neiman Marcus catalog that arrived in the mail and a beautiful white cashmere sweater caught my eye. My first reaction was “Wow. This is nice. I should buy it”. But then I stopped myself and said “Really? You have so many sweaters already. There aren’t enough days in the Fall/Winter for you to wear all the great looks you own”. It was an epiphany for me. If I love the items I own, don’t I want to wear them multiple times? Given everything I own, how many days are there available to wear them? I decided to count how many sweaters I already own...25! I could almost wear a different sweater each day for a month! . It hasn’t even been cool enough to wear any sweaters yet (although I believe that changes today). I only counted sweaters. I also have blouses and t-shirts and blazers and cardigans. If I estimate that I will have sweater wearing weather from now until the end of March, and I subtract some days for a few Florida escape trips that we will hopefully plan, then I will need warm clothing outfits for about 130 days. If I only wore sweaters then that would mean each sweater could get worn approximately 5 times each. But considering I have many blouses, dresses, cardigans, blazers and basically a whole slew of other outfits that I can put together (which would not include those sweaters), then I am likely going to wear those sweaters even less (anywhere from 2 to 4 times). So what does this all mean? In a nutshell it means I have enough of sweaters. But it also means that any additional sweaters I might buy will decrease the amount of times I will wear the great outfits I already own. No more sweaters!
Anyway, back to those triggers of mine. My biggest shopping trigger these days (that I find hard to resist) are the beauty and fashion bloggers that I watch on Youtube. When I see a new lipstick shade that I like or eyeshadow combination, or someone gives super great ratings for a new undereye concealer, then I always want to get it. Lately, since I purged my makeup, I have been able to resist and have only added a couple of Fall shade lipsticks. But the fashion bloggers have been putting my shopping urges into overtime. The boots, sweaters, cardigans, coats, bags…I want to buy everything the blogger is modeling. I often have a very hard time resisting and end up purchasing at least one or two items. With a nudge from my therapist, I decided to try something new….going COLD TURKEY from the beauty and fashion bloggers for a week.
It has only been four days since I haven’t viewed any beauty or fashion Youtubers, but I can tell you the first day was hard and each day after has been even more difficult. I'm hoping that this difficulty will level off soon and I won't miss it so much. I have filled in my coffee and tea time with other activities, but I still kept asking myself “I wonder what Angie reviewed today?” Or “I wonder if Erin put together any Fall looks?”. As difficult as it has been, I have stuck to my goal and have noticed something spectacular…I haven’t shopped! Okay, so you are not surprised by that, but I am very happy to see my sacrifice pay off! I haven’t decided yet if I will extend this "fashion blogger fasting" for a second week, but I am leaning towards that! To fill in the void, I have turned to a few other positive, non-shopping blogs to read, such as BeMoreWithLess.com
I haven’t given up on the meditating, although I haven’t completed it every day. Using the Headspace app has helped to keep me focused on my breathing and for the few times I’ve meditated, I have felt better afterwards. I will say that overall this has been a good non-shopping week…one where I have successfully avoided certain triggers and also managed my emotions well. Next week, I hope to include de-cluttering updates into my blog. If you’ve been wanting to, but also procrastinating decluttering your own house (and life), then let’s begin this journey together!