G’day and welcome to blog #100 of My Story. This is my last blog posting under this format. Next year, things will change around here. The focus of the blog will be different, I won’t be numbering the posts, or finishing every one with “Right?” like I have for every single one of these 100 posts this year (you noticed that, surely….).
I’d like to finish off this series of postings on an upbeat note. And to encourage you to make 2011 your year to Shop Your Wardrobe. If you’re already started your year without clothes shopping, then you probably need no further convincing of what an excellent idea this is.
If you are thinking about doing it, then let me assure you that it is an outstandingly rich experience. The last 12 months have changed me – I feel so much lighter now. My last post, my Lessons Learned from a year without clothes shopping, went into detail about those things that really made an impression on me during the challenge.
Today I went out for a late lunch with my husband. We had our Thai chicken and salad number with a Milo Mojo shake (and whoa – what a culinary combination that was!). We sat and watched people in their summer somnolence, we enjoyed the ocean breeze, and we enjoyed each other’s company.
I felt no need to rush into the stores to see what delights were stacked on shelves or hanging on racks. Instead, I enjoyed and soaked up that moment. That food. That man’s company. That strange concoction of milo, banana and yoghurt. And I felt a deep joy. (I also felt a strange aching in my tooth from the assault of such a hot and cold food/drink combination in one sitting, but that’s for my dentist and I to discuss tomorrow).
There is something deeply satisfying about slaying an important dragon in one’s life. For some people, those reading this right now probably, your dragon may be a clothes shopping one. It was for me, too.
For other people, it’s something else – maybe it’s CD or book shopping (for one person I know, it was shopping for comic books. Yes, this was a person over the age of 12 and everything). For other people it’s not shopping at all – it’s another kind of activity that lures them in, grabs them by the scruff of the neck, and won’t let go.
I know someone whose competitive nature is so tautly wound that he cannot enjoy any activity for what it is – he must compete, and he must win. Whether it’s bike riding or playing bridge, it’s a contest. To his way of thinking, there are adversaries and there will be a loser and a winner – none of this “enjoyment of the game” crap for him!
This man is so in the grip of this combative way of approaching all his hobbies that he enjoys none of them. He’s always keeping score. Sure, that isn’t a shopping compulsion – but it is a compulsion. It’s an unexamined set of behaviours with as much a grip on him as my shopping compulsion had on me a year ago. All this is said with great love and respect for this person. Of course. (I couldn’t possibly live in a glass house about this stuff. The yearly bill for window cleaner alone would be exorbitant).
But don’t just take my word for it. Of course I’m going to say it’s a great idea – my year is finished!
So, here’s what one of our 3-months-into-it members of the Shop Your Wardrobe program sent out to her friends (of both the virtual and flesh’n’bone variety):
I’ve found a resource to share with you if you feel that you shop too much and want to take control of your spending. It’s called Shop Your Wardrobe – a 12 month online course that tackles a different topic every month. It’s chock full of fabulous & fascinating material – from how to mix’n’match what you already have to the emotional reasons we shop. Jill Chivers is the creator of the course and she’s got a swag of expert contributors lined up. I’m doing it and loving it! Make 2011 the year you Shop Your Wardrobe and join me on this great challenge over at http://shopyourwardrobe.com
I love that! (and this lady says it’s OK for you to use any of her words, if you like, if you want to share with your own network). And the answer is No – no money changed hands during that particular exchange.
My friend April Lane Benson has also shared with her network about what we’re doing here – click here to read her post (and if you have found us because of April – you are so welcome here at our place!).
I was so thrilled to meet April, who is a true master in this particular space, having a PhD and a series of publications to her name on the topic of overspending. I feel like Luke Skywalker to her Obi-Wan Kenobe (I wonder if I can get her to call me “Grasshopper”?). To have April not only support what we do here, but to offer to be a guest contributor for our program, was pure icing on the cake. April will be joining us in Months 6 and 12 of the program.
More good reasons to make 2011 your year to Shop Your Wardrobe. So, please help us spread the word and join us here if you haven’t already. We can’t start a revolution without you! Right?
And see? It’s on page 3! I’m doing my own Dr Evil impersonation with our ragdoll zen princess, Mango, on my lap.
You know, it’s funny how things happen. Today I was approached by a delightful mother/daughter team who are creating a movie-length documentary on the theme of gratitude. They saw the story on me and my journey in yesterday’s paper, and liked the bit about how I have appreciated more of what I have in this past year. They thought it would be a good fit for their movie on gratitutde.
And I thought no-one read the local paper. Goes to show how one thing can lead to the next, in ways you could never have predicted or planned.
In signing off this final post, magic #100, allow me to thank you for your company during this last year. I cannot tell you how much it means to have someone to share the journey with. The ups. The downs. The missed shoe sales. Thank you for walking with me. For those of you who are having your own year without clothes shopping, please know that I am walking with you every step of the way. And what a journey it’s going to be. Right?