Is it just me or are there so many pretty dresses in the shops at the moment? On Sunday I did something that I have been wanting to do for ages, which was walk around the shops and pop into my favourite stores with no pressure to be somewhere and with no distractions (Tom or Rocco). Whilst I enjoy shopping online and would visit my favourite stores online, I still value the experience of talking to the shop staff, seeing clothing in the flesh, touching the fabric, checking the quality and seeing the cut on my body shape, especially when I am all by myself in complete peace. So I was very excited come Sunday morning.
There were so many stunning dresses that I came across, I was in awe of the quality, original styles and colour palettes. To be honest, I could have bought 5 dresses that day. However if I had, it would have come with regret, then feelings of guilt and even worse, disappointment, disappointment in myself that is.
One of the most valuable shopping skills that I have developed is patience. Waiting until I have sorted my personal finances out before diving straight into the retail deep end. I make sure my credit card balance is $0, I make sure I have enough money in my everyday account to last until my next payday, I ensure that my Life and Emergency Account is cashed up and finally I make sure I am making enough progress with my own financial goals.
Then I reward myself with a luxury purchase paid for in cash, no debt created. And I enjoy it not only guilt free but with pride because I know that I worked hard for it, and that it is not going to sabotage my financial position or even my future financial position.
I am not talking jeans and t-shirts or work clothes, they are the basics and the necessities that we should all realistically factor into our budgets. I am talking the pretty dresses, the luxury handbags, the shinny new shoes. The “pretty and fun” purchases.
That day I didn’t buy any new pretty dresses. But I will have a serious think about two of them, make sure I can afford them without jeopardising my cash flow, savings or financial goals, I will think up at least 5 different events where I will realistically wear them, I will make sure they realistically match my style and of course my colour palette and then finally I will make sure I can fit them in my wardrobe, even if it means I have to let one or even two go.
These pretty, fun, luxurious purchases are meant to be acts of self love and respect. Letting us wear our clothes with pride but still allowing us to be grounded, authentic and having the right balance in life.