Not Shopping

I sure don’t miss this fracas.


Before you all yell at me, I know that I recently wrote a post about buying pajamas and now, I’m going to write about not shopping.

I really have stopped shopping. There were no Christmas gifts this year and no after Christmas sale shopping (except for the pajamas which I literally didn’t own).

Recently there was an article in the NYTimes about not shopping for a year. I was intrigued. Could I do it? Did I want to try it? I don’t like giving myself ultimatums, which, like resolutions, seem to disappear into the air. But since I don’t shop much, not shopping wasn’t going to be difficult.

If you were to visit me, you would say my home is minimalist in decor and uncluttered. I’ve gone digital with books, music and movies. It’s been exhausting both physically and emotionally to Kon Mari everything (“Does it bring me joy?”) and then have numerous garage sales to get rid of things from my previously big family life. I’m not inclined to bring anything new into my life after spending so much time and effort getting rid of it. Not to mention the amount of money I spent to buy it in the first place.

I can report that not shopping has been a refreshing and pleasant surprise. I’m not getting in the car to go to and fro. I’m not spending time in the white noise of malls and stores looking for things, looking through stuff.

The lack of shopping stimulation makes me feel free in a way I never imagined. I have a fresh mind and more energy. I’ve started reading a lot.

There’s a new tranquility in my life now. I didn’t realize it was absent before. I’m happy not to be visually stimulated by things I really don’t want to look at. I’m not spending money; I’m saving it. I’m more content than ever with what I have.

Now when there’s something I need, I think, oh darn, I have to go shopping.

xo Liza

P.S. I’m impressed by the date on my KonMari post – 2014. I’m an early adopter! One of the things I want to concentrate on is not throwing out food. I have to meal plan better.

P.P.S. Last night the article on Uma Thurman speaking her angry mind broke in the New York Times. My. Oh my.

Hello my lovelies. Seems I can’t let a day go by that I don’t put something into the “donate” box I keep in my garage. What about you? Are you shopping less and enjoying life more? Have you been able to declutter? Do you like online shopping? The comments box ladies, the comments box! If you enjoy being part of our wise, witty group of savvy, stylish women, enter your email in the box above so you don’t miss a thing.

11 thoughts on “Not Shopping

  1. I don’t like shopping either. However I have adopted scent in my house ( like the fine hotels), which prompts me to purchase NICE candles. I aim to use all food because eating out at affordable places is often disappointing. A grand dinner out on occasion is truly grand in my book.
    I too put items in give away bags very often.

  2. Shopping has always been a bit of a chore for me so not shopping for a year would be a relief, I think. I truly believe that when we are younger we want to feather our nest and then when we are older we want to de-feather it. Hormonal, perhaps? I currently find myself with about a few dozen decorative items that have still a tad of sentimental value for me because I remember every detail about when, where and with whom I purchased them. I even remember the joy of picking them out and acquiring them. At this point, however, they weigh me down and seem like clutter to me. Some of them have monetary value. I’m at a loss about how to sell them or to whom to give them. Any suggestions?

    1. Thanks for writing Chloe. I learned, after emptying my parents’ home, that things only have value for the owners of them. What I couldn’t give away or sell from my parents’ home, sadly just ended up in a dumpster. First of course, ask your kids if they want them. If not, send out an email blast to all the relatives and see if they want them. Then try to sell, donate to silent auctions, and all the usual venues. I think when things weigh you down — they’ve got to go. It’s painful and then your life seems lighter. We don’t need the emotional weight. Hope this helps. xo

  3. I sold my apartment in September. I had wanted to do somethimg dractically….move from Montreal to Victoria, BC. So….what to do with my stuff. No point in moving the furniture from one side of Canada to the other. Well…I Had to give away all of it……to neighbours, friends, or other contacts. A Catholic ministry was supposed to pick up a few things the last day before leaving…they came and did not want it. So it had to be dragged out and placed on the sidewalk. Items like nice china, pewter, items from trips, loads of clothes..had to be given away to friends and neighbours, the Salvation Army. So..a lot less of everything now in my new abode. Had to get new furniture, of course, but a lot less. It feels good.

    to the Salvation Army and to the dumpsters. Well….gone. I do not miss at all. No more clutter.

    1. Wow Katrina! What a story! First of all congratulations on your move! Victoria is a beautiful place to live. Congratulations on being brave enough to make such a big change. And yes, heartbreaking to see how things we valued, are valued by no one else. Another life lesson. And you have a new life! I want to hear more! xo

  4. I just did a huge decluttering taking my stuff to value village. My son helped on my request, because I needed someone to be brutal with encouraging me to get rid of stuff. I always find it challenging doing this and get overwhelmed with the process. But once it’s gone I feel so much better. I’m still doing it in a much smaller scale, a drawer here, a box there.
    At the beginning of the year I challenge myself to not shop at the dollar store for the month of January. I LOVE the dollar store. I’m not sure why, so much in there is plastic and a few years ago I made a decision not to buy plastic! But I succeeded and rewarded myself with a trip to the dollar store! I’m planning on only going every other month, baby steps.
    As for food, since I found the app mealine, I only buy what I need, cook what I buy and eat it. There is very little waste when you plan your menus, have a shopping list and recipes. The app does it all for you.

    1. Mary, thank you for writing! Congratulations on your decluttering! I know how painful it is, and then afterwards, you don’t miss the stuff. Possessions own us, instead of vice versa. Baby steps re your shopping habits are excellent and I love the idea of the meal app. I’ve got to tackle this situation now, as my pantry is full of things and then I go to the supermarket. I feel another blog post coming on!

  5. Thank you for your blog! At 70 and a lifelong collector, I began decluttering when I retired 4 years ago. For me it is an ongoing process with each time finding me getting rid of more things. I will never be a minimalist nor is that a part of my personality. But I enjoy that each decluttering process leaves me only with more things left that I truly love (or are useful). I’m divesting myself of the so-so’s! I have never enjoyed shopping but struggle with online Amazon shopping mostly for books but am learning to enjoy my e-reader (reluctantly!). I also love and don’t feel guilty about buying good food and, like another poster, good candles as well as essential oils. I’m committed to living a sensuous (as in using all my senses) life. You are inspiring me to at least try harder to use what I buy and to make wise purchasing decisions (or not purchase as the case may be).

    1. Hi Donna! Thank you for writing. Always ongoing. Something that was dear to me a month ago, I can now part with. I think money spent on books is one of life’s pleasures. Lately, the price of books has fallen almost to the cost of a Kindle book. So I buy the book, read it, and send it on its way, to friends, to a library, to a shelter. I never keep the book. And I agree with you, I’m a minimalist, but I deeply love the things I do have. I’m all for buying things you can consume: candles, food, etc. and experiences!

  6. Well, a forced retirement before I was financially ready certainly helped to curtail the spending impulse! 🙂
    The first year was tough as it was the Fall, the time I would normally be looking to add to my office wardrobe. It was tough staying out of the stores – but it got easier. I have now adopted more of a uniform for much of the time, and I keep a number of extra casual and comfortable pieces for wearing around the house, and these can be worn for a number of days in a row.
    I needed no new Summer clothes aside from 2pair of converse shoes purchased on sale. When Fall rolled around again I took a really hard look at what I needed and added only those – 2 white blouses, 2 casual sweaters, 1 Heavy Fall Jacket and a pair of woollen gloves. I wandered by one of my favourite stores this morning and the new Spring colours are out – but I resisted the temptation and didn’t step inside.
    I don’t need anything for my apt. at all. I did an overhaul when I retired, threw out a lot, had a garage sale, and gave away a lot of other bits & pieces. I found that once I started it got easier and easier. The one area that I still resist is getting rid of my books – I tried going electronic but hated my KOBO and went back to “real” books. BUT – I do pass along many more rather than holding on to them, plus a couple of friends and I will purchase certain sets and then trade so that helps a lot – clutter wise and cost wise.
    I feel comfortable with what I have now and I think that’s key – what works for you. Shopping never was a form of entertainment so that also helps. It’s not that I don’t like nice things, I just don’t feel the need to own it all nor do I feel the need to own the latest and greatest edition of something. Knowing when you have enough is key.

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