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If you think that shopaholics want to go shopping all the time, you are wrong.
The urges to run to the blissful place that I call The Mall come and go in waves. Usually it happens on days when I am stressed and feel vulnerable. Sometimes it happens when I feel self-content and want to extend that feeling of happiness by browsing through an endless supply of clothes and shoes.
I am not one of those people who can window shop. If I go to the mall, my goal is to spend money. I don’t set a budget for a shopping trip because it never works. There is always something – a pair of jeans, a raincoat, a scarf – that will throw my shopping budget out the window.
Last Saturday the oh-so-familiar longing washed over me, and I almost ran out to the car to drive to the mall. But I was able to stop myself. Then the question came to my mind: what lies beneath my spending compulsions?
Advertising might affect some people, but it has no effect on me. I read magazines, and I watch TV. I see advertising everywhere. When I do see something that I like, I cannot help but analyze. I wonder how much Photoshop was used on Julia Roberts’ face to advertise an insanely expensive moisturizer?
Do I want to have flawless skin? Of course, I do! Am I going to pay hundreds of dollars for that cream. Hell no!
I don’t believe in Photoshop, and I strongly believe in genetics, serious use of sunscreen and avoiding the sun. I take every single advertisement with a HUGE grain of salt.
Emotional appeal of advertising does not have any affect on my spending. Not because I am some narcissistic and ego-maniacal person. I suspect that every single ad represents an exaggeration and some distortion of truth.
I don’t care that the Joneses wear Louboutin shoes and drive a Lamborghini. I might look at those shoes, getting into some state of coma. I might even lose control over my mouth muscles and drool a little.
However, status symbols, especially the ones that denote association with wealth have no effect on me. I don’t give a rat’s patootie if you drink wine that sells for $350 a bottle, live in a mansion with golden door knobs and swim in a pool with dolphins. No one can define the way I look, the way I dress, and, most importantly, the way I live my life.
I do want to have nice things. But I don’t care what my rich neighbors or friends enjoy. I realize that there will always be people who have more that I do. It doesn’t bother me. Things do not define us, remember?
I don’t bargain hunt. Now, don’t you shake your head dismissively at me! I declared right from the bat that I am not a thrift store shopper, and I am not a frugal person. But if I go into my favorite store and see a jacket I have wanted forever on sale, I will buy it, and I will be insanely happy about it. Who doesn’t love a good sale after all?
However, most of the time I will not buy an item just because it is on sale. Somehow it always seems to me that the best looking clothes in my size never make it to a sale’s rack. Price is important to me, don’t misunderstand me. But I will not go out of my way to look for a sale.
Feeling depressed, stressed and vulnerable? Are you hurting or experiencing an emotional meltdown? Feeling angry and want to unwind? Why not go and get something nice then?
I am definitely in this category. The worst part of it is when I am feeling sad, I always spend more on myself than when I am shopping on any other given day. On my sad and stressed days my thinking is extra self-centered, and I go for extra self-indulgence.
Before I immersed myself into blogging what seems to be on a part-time job basis, I did not have a hobby that would absorb me too much. I did like writing, and I wrote quite a bit. But there were no deadlines, no “I have to” thinking. I had a pretty flexible and undemanding schedule.
From time to time I would get bored with writing and myself. I would get in the car and drive to the mall in order to fill in the time that I had on my hands. Lately, it is not an issue anymore because I simply don’t have time to even get bored. Between my work, blogging and my family life, I barely have time to a take shower.