December 29, 2012

Spoilt for Choice

I still remember the time when Diwali used to stand for waking up before the sunrise, the traditional ganga snanam, touching the elders' feet afterwards and receiving blessings and new clothes from them. Diwali, Pongal, maybe Ganesha Chaturthi and the birthday were the only occasions when we would buy new clothes. So much that, everybody would eagerly anticipate the arrival of the festivals, get their clothes ready in advance and get terribly excited about the prospect of trying the new "dress" on. Did i go through all that this year? Of course not. I woke up as usual since i did not have to really compete against the street kids as to who would burst the first cracker of the day. I stopped the cracker bursting business ages ago. The ganga snanam happened in cauvery water and since mister tailor had not gotten my new clothes ready, i had to resort to wearing something that was not brand new. But what surprised me was the fact that i was not really disappointed. And why is that? That is because i dont really look forward to the handful of occasions anymore to pick a new dress or a pretty accessory. The "have money- will spend" attitude has taken away  the thrill out of new clothes for festivals.
I saw a poster yesterday that said, buy only things that are absolutely necessary and things that you really love. I think half the stuff i have is something that i have picked up as an impulse purchase, only to stop liking it a few days later. Another quarter of my stuff is what i have picked up because the discount was great!  Goal for 2013- Junking all the items not used over the past 6 months, giving away everything that i have stowed away in the secret hope that i will be able to fit into it someday again and to buy wisely from now on.
Coupon shopping has wrecked havoc with monthly budgets the whole last year. After a year of reckless spending, i am now wiser to know that no deal is the last deal. And most things that are bought with coupons are only add ons to existing stuff. Do i need that extra handbag that is on unbelievable 50% off? I know i will survive without it. So am not buying it. How many watches does one need? One or two for regular use, a dressy one for occasions. The eyes and the heart will continue rivet at the shiny Rolex watch on the glossy supplement of the ToI. But it is about finding out whether it is a want or a need.
There is plenty of choice out there when you go shopping. Life was much more simple when there was not much choice. I had one watch that i wore all through high school and college. Bought clothes only for festivals. Wore that same gold earring everyday. And now, i have to dwell on what to wear to work each morning even though i have a closet full of clothes. Once the clothes are picked, think about matching accessories. And no, not done yet. Shoes? Winterwear? I dont know if it is simple to go back to how it was in school. That would mean giving away all those accessories and am not yet ready for that. But yes, i am resolving to cut down on purchases. To pick up only the best of the things rather than being carried away by a discount. And am reserving all future purchases for important occasions so that, when i recollect a purchase, i can also recollect the occasion and the happiness associated with it.

1 comment:

  1. I completely agree with your sentiments regarding discount sales. If one would just walk near the malls over a weekend, then it feels like things are being given away for free or something. Most women i know have enough clothes to last a month without having to wash anything. One must grow wiser with age :)