Monday, 14 July 2014

Where Does It All Come From?

Holiday time and a chance to clear out a bit of that build up in drawers, wardrobes and bookshelves again...oh, and the rack next to my chair where I put things I'm going to read - Ha! I thought I'd done a good job of clearing space in my life last time I did this, but somehow one lot of clothes didn't quite leave the house. I found them in the back of a cupboard, still looking like they don't want to live here any more. They will go this time, along with whatever I've skimmed off the current load. Honestly, have you ever pulled all your clothes out of the wardrobe (the shelf part, not the hanging stuff) and the chest of drawers...and the clean stuff in the laundry basket...and piled it all on your bed? It was staggering how much there was when you consider that I wear the same dozen items over and over again. There is rarely a change in the load going through the washing cycle each week. So what's it all about...and where does it all come from????

I'm making myself think about it so I might finally tame the tiger in me that seems to keep going through this same cycle...accumulate and throw out. When I say throw out, I don't mean into the garbage...I mean that I bag things up and take them to the charity shop and they can decide if there are some things and they can use and which few might not make the grade and end up in the bin or perhaps in the rag bag. They do sell rag bags so I reckon most of the stuff they get in will be used in some way. So what is it in me that seems to need to keep purchasing clothes? 

I suppose I often think that I could improve the way I present myself to the world and that perhaps a new this or that might help me to do that. But I think the real problem is that instead of knowing I want a pair of comfortable, well cut dress pants (for example) and looking online or going on a dedicated spree that takes me into every shop in town looking...I tend to be out doing something else, see some nice looking black pants on a rack...don't really have time to try them on, but the size looks right...take them home and find they don't fit well at all. I live a long way from the shops so I might mean to take them back for a refund, or think to myself that I might one day get someone to come and pin them here and there and get my sewing machine out...but of course, that never happens and I'm stuck with them.

Or perhaps those tee shirts were only $5 and I loved all the bright colours...but when I get them home and try them on they just don't seem to suit. Into the drawer...wear them once or twice then no more. Am I just hard to please or am I throwing my money away due to lack of planning and self-control?? Well, that's a no brainer!! It's the latter. I tend to impulse buy...because things are cheap. In the end they are expensive because they don't enhance my life at all but rather cause chaos and clutter in my life. They glare at me each time I'm looking for something to wear and remind me that they are there but I don't want them. 

Is it healthy to let things remain in your life when you don't want the? I'm talking about things here. Not people. You might need to explore the reasons you don't want people in your life...but with things...they are there to serve you or to make your life richer. If they're not doing that then you're probably better off with them gone. So that's what I'm going to do today. Take a load to the opportunity shop. Hopefully someone else will find them more useful than I have. I find the same with jewellery. I love beads. I buy them. I put them on and they don't suit. I don't feel comfortable wearing them. So out they go. 

I think I need to create a mantra for shopping. What could that be? Perhaps I need to put a wee card in my purse that asks loudly...will this make your life richer??? do you really want this??? really??? Or maybe I need it printed on the outside of my purse, just to make sure I can't overlook it! Would that make me stop and think? Because I can do better things with my money than to spend it on things that end up being 'rubbish' in a sense. I would rather only spend my money on things that I know will add value to my life. I wonder if I can change after all these years of doing things the impulse way? I think as I'm growing older I am getting to know myself better and slowing down in some ways...becoming a little bit calmer and more reasonable (some may argue!!). I think I can do this.

As I free myself of this latest burden of no-use stuff, I'm going to keep focused on what it is that has put me in this need to off-load stuff. I'm going to try and not just feel the relief of letting it go, but also to commit to myself not to spend unless it's something that I really believe my heart and my brain...that it is exactly the thing that I need and not just near enough or it will do. If I do that, I'm pretty sure I'll end up having the savings I keep wishing I had, and perhaps I'll get to make that trip back to England that I've often dreamed of doing. A little restraint can pay off in wonderful ways. Wish me luck...but for now I'm just going to be so relieved not to have to keep looking at all those bad, impulsive decisions as they glare up at me accusingly. I'm going to be free again. I don't really mind if I wear the same stuff over and over. I just want practical and comfortable clothes. 

Oh, I have to admit that I did buy two pairs of pyjamas and a dressing gown in town the other day with Mum...when Dad was in the hospital. I have worn both of the pjs and the dg and all are successful purchases. Cosy and comfy. I also bought three scarves that were on sale. They are not lurid colours or vibrant patterns which would usually grab my attention and tempt me. One is beige, one is smoky blue and one is black. They are warm and comfortable and will compliment many of the other things I have in my wardrobe. I think they were a sensible buy...a good investment. I feel very pleased with myself about that really. 

What are your shopping habits? I look at all the millions of tons of clothing in the shops out there and think I mustn't be the only one tempted to buy on impulse. What was your worst 'investment' in clothing?  We're all human and the advertising and marketing gurus know just how to manipulate us into buying things that will not help or enrich our lives...they are masters at it. In the end though, we get the money out of our purses and hand it over. I guess it's up to us to know who we are and what we really want in life. That helps us to make wiser choices. Love to you all. Kerry xo

PS As for the books...some I've read long ago and some more recently. I'm going to let them go so they can enrich someone else's life. I will continue to buy books now and then because I love them, but I do often buy them pre-loved...and I wouldn't be able to do that if someone else hadn't let them go. Circle of love.