Two weeks or so ago, I was fighting with my closet and decided surrendering to the sofa to watch the Today Show was a better use of my time until I could whip something together. After muttering, “I have nothing to wear,” for the 30th time that morning and pondering if I could sneak over to Barneys or Zara after work, a segment came on about a 31 Day Detox starting in August. A challenge? A competition? Game On! Natalie was giving up shopping. I needed to give up this very activity. July was a bit of an overdose situation: Crossing lists off, finishing the studio, shopping to feed emotions… it needed a breakup. So there I thought to myself… Could I really do this? 31 whole days of shopping abandonment?
I made the rules over the course of a week:
1. No retail therapy! Included in this list… Saturday outings to Paramus to visit J.Crew and Madewell visual set-up stores. So long Fall wardrobes in August. So long Zara… (ironic that today of all days they post their A/W campaign. Shoot me.) Browsing was allowed but why tempt yourself?
2. No new books! A visit to the good ole’ library will have to do for any new fiction on your list. So long Strand for 31 days! With a pile to get through next to my bed.. I should be able to survive this rule.
3. Baking Obsessions: Cake pans, muffin trays, pie dishes and modern cake stands all can stay on their shelves at the store. This will give myself time to perfect my recipes without going broke with presentation skills and crumbling cakes. Which leads to.. no cookbooks or Martha Stewart specials. Pinterest boards will be my refuge.
4. Studio Style: While the studio is cozy and quaint, no trinkets or chairs , pillows or throws, owls and diptyques need not apply.
5. One may dine out once a week at your favorite spots.
6. Birthday, wedding, baby and special gifts for others than yourself are exempt for this detox. Gifts need to be within reason.
7. Work trips are considered part of this and shopping on these trips is forbidden.
I feel confident in this detox as it will allow me to concentrate on things other than shopping and fillers to fill the voids of daily life. I can get back to work on my blog. Spend more time baking and making floral arrangements. Gardening and writing letters. Reading my list of novels that have been bedside for weeks with the intent of browsing through once a week. And even doing the things I love to do more than anything… write and bake for the ones I adore most.
Shopping only fills whatever emotion is empty at the moment. It gives you a quick high and then within minutes, bag in hand, it’s left. For these 31 days, I am reconnecting with myself and not elements to fill a real space. I know there will be moments of weakness…. but I owe it to myself to get back-to-basics and focus on the larger things in life I need to reach for.
It’s 5pm as I write this. I survived an outing to the mall for work. Nothing was speaking to me the way they usually do when I walk into a store. Mannequins weren’t as friendly… no waving arms, no whispers of “You need me in your life!” I was focused on the mission… 31 days. 31 days. I purchased a wedding present and a birthday present. Nothing for myself and all within reason. I felt empowered! I am sure this will vary day-to-day and the LA trip that is happening on Monday is going to be on a whole other level for sure….
Follow along for these 31 days.
Lots of love,
Image Courtesy of: lacoolethic