I’m now so used to having a small number of items to choose from when getting dressed, that I find too much choice quite stressful.
I went shopping with a friend recently and was taken aback as to how hard I found it. I’ve forgotten how to browse – which, to be honest, I don’t consider to be a bad thing!
Before we set out, she enquired anxiously whether it was okay to shop ‘now that you’re a minimalist’!! I explained that, of course, I still needed and wanted to shop, but I try to make it more intentional and more of a conscious choice.
These days, I shop armed with quite specific ideas. So, I wouldn’t just say, for example, ‘I need a jumper’. I would know what colour, neckline, sleeve-length, fabric and style I wanted, which would fit in with my capsule and give me as many options as possible. And then I would be very focused on looking for something that fit my idea. Like I said, it ain’t browsing!
I now find when I visit the shops, whether bricks-and-mortar or on-line, the sheer volume of choice can be overwhelming. As it happens, that day I was looking for a shirt for work and I left with nothing! Zilch! There were many options but none that fitted my idea. Faced with too much choice, I chose nothing.
My friend had no such limitations and got everything she wanted – and then some. She left happy and I left feeling I needed to lie down with a cold cloth on my forehead!
Rather than doing that, I opened my wardrobe and looked at the carefully curated, neatly hanging small number of items. I felt a sense of peace and calm. There were some shops we had visited (naming no names) where there were piles of clothes just dumped randomly, many on the floor and some just dangling off hangers, creased and pathetic-looking – staffed by people who clearly didn’t want to be there – and I couldn’t blame them. I didn’t feel one bit deprived leaving empty-handed from those stores!
My poor friend! I’m probably not as fun to shop with as before. But I don’t want to view shopping as entertainment. I still like shopping but it’s more an intentional exercise for me now and browsing and impulse-buying has no place in it. I choose less stress!
Have a great week 😊