Without lunch meetings, dinner dates, fancy parties, events, and without an office to go to — what’s the point of even shopping for new
So much of our clothing shopping is tied to public spaces and other people it seems — festival clothing, wedding season dresses, back-to-school trends, workplace attire, nightclub looks — when those things are all off the table and we only have to
Or the bigger questions: Do I need anything beyond sweats? Heck I can’t even remember the last time I wore jeans! But of course at SOME point, all these activities will resume. Will our shopping habits with them?
I have to admit that I was a shopping addict. Shopping was a pastime I did with friends, it was my stress reliever. It was the thing I could do when I felt anxious. I could browse through clothing sites each new season, with the same seriousness I gave to my taxes (okay, fine: MORE seriousness), reading the
What I do know is that it meant a whole new crop of clothing. Twice a year, sometimes more. My closet is the result of that, wooden rods barely able to hold the weight, two rows jammed packed with little space to move. It’s suffocating to think about. My issue, I used to think was, I just needed a bigger closet. I’ve come to learn that’s not the case.
Shopping Shut Down
Everything changed with COVID. No more
It’s been a glorious,
At first during the
But as the days wore on, deliveries started to feel less special and the financial stress of the
And so I stopped.
And I survived.
I did other things — online art classes, crafting, working out more. I started a new business and soon was working around the clock. Shopping was the last thing on my mind. I’d venture a guess to say most of us could actually go the next five years without buying a new pair of pants or shirts and we’d be just fine.
Returning to Retail
Recently I took my first steps back into a TJ Maxx (one of my old “happy places”). It had been about eight months since I was in the store and I took an hour to get away from the house and unwind. Shopping felt different. It was like my brain had rewired. I didn’t feel the pull of the promise of a new life tied to this purchase. Or of a better version of me to be found hidden within the clearance rack, just waiting for my discovery. I looked at price tags more and rethought purchases. I put stuff BACK. The weight and burden of what I already own was tangible. How could I suppose adding to it would be a good idea?
Of course, online shopping is still right at our fingertips and easier than ever with how often we are on our phones. That temptation is still there, I must confess, and I still love the idea of new trends, new clothing lines, a
So I pose the question to you. Has staying home more made you feel like shopping less? Have you moved away from needing so much to being happy with just what you have? What still motivates you to keep shopping?
Three Ways to Shop Less
- Move all your shopping apps into a folder so they aren’t front and center on your phone. The less you see them, the less tempted you’ll be.
- Tie a purchase into a chore. In order to buy “x” item you’ll need to perform “y” task. Make the task something you’ve put off, so even if you make a purchase it was a useful motivation to get an arduous task completed.
- Use the “favorite” and “save for later” buttons often. You’ll still have a similar feeling of acquiring, but can give yourself some time (at least 24 hours) to really think over whether you need this item.