Not much has happened since last week in terms of getting rid of things. In fact, I bought stuff! Well, it was dish detergent and tissues, two things we are out of, but still. It seems so easy on paper to get rid of most of your stuff, but in practice the brain comes up with all these excuses to try to hang on to it. I hadn’t realized when I began quite how hard my brain would fight to hang on to its old patterns.
For instance “well I can’t get rid of that because my kids (that aren’t born yet) might want to play with it!” Leaving aside for a minute the simple truth that whatever electronic device I am thinking of (in this case my Wii) will be obsolete in a few years, doesn’t that sort of defeat the purpose of a minimalist lifestyle? “Well kids, I want to live with only the right number of things, but you should have all the junk that you want.” Um . . . no. That’s not what I’m aiming for.
I have had a note of success though! I am selling shoes. Yes, it’s a stereotype that women collect shoes, but I truly do. I have bought 7 pairs of new shoes just this Spring. 7! So last week I sat down and asked myself which shoes I actually wear, and which shoes I would happy wearing every day. For work, that number came to four. Which is amazing considering that there are 11 pairs of shoes sitting under my desk at work right now. So I sent an e-mail to some friends who love shoes and are my size asking if they want to buy any of them (my older shoes I will give away, but I may as well get some money from a basically brand new pair of Jimmy Choos). Frankly, I’m excited to get rid of them. Every time I see those damn Jimmy Choos they remind me of all of the strings that are holding me down. All of the possessions and financial obligations that are keeping me from the freedom that I crave are represented by that one impulse buy at an outlet mall. It will feel good to have them safely on someone else’s feet.
What’s the biggest impulse purchase that you have made? How do you feel about it now?
*Incidentally, my friends were so damn excited when I bought those shoes. For weeks one of my friends who works with me at DJF would proudly show them off to anyone who came by. Even then it bothered me. Why on Earth should someone be proud of me because I spent money? What a symptom of what’s wrong with our culture.