What are you depriving yourself of?
I was recently able to spend time with my Mum on Mother’s Day (It’s in March in the UK) and bought her a nice smart cardigan as a gift. We were going out for lunch and I suggested she wear it. After initially deciding to keep it for ‘best’ she agreed to wear it and it got me thinking about the concept of saving things for a special occasion or rainy day.
I have spent a lifetime keeping things for best, making do, buying bargains and cheating myself. I have finally learned what a false economy this is. As a bargain hunter, I often bought items I didn’t really like but wore them leaving my nice items hanging in the wardrobe. I made a decision a few years ago to enjoy the things I have today. I now wear and use what I want and no longer buy bargains unless I really love them.
It is not just about clothes
It can be anything we try save for a rainy day. I worked for a company where I had to do a lot of work from my home office. I bought a lovely and expensive desk. The sales person suggested that I purchase a glass surface to protect the wood. I declined. I wanted to enjoy the look and texture of the furniture while I was using it. If I wanted a glass desk I would have bought one. I remember going to people’s homes who still had the plastic on their furniture to protect it. I always wondered would there be a time when they decided today is the day? when they could finally get to enjoy their comfortable sofa? Or did they unwrap it one day a week to feel special?
I understand the concept of keeping some things for special occasions. Yet this kind of thinking can become pervasive and stop us from living our best life. Many of us are saving for a rainy day and it’s pouring down.
What else are you saving?
Your vacation time?
Much of it goes unused in the US because people are afraid to take it, or save it up until it it expires.
How many people die with money in drawers or banks accounts? saving it for their children or a rainy day that long since passed.
I so often hear people say they will “do it” when they retire or win the lottery. Tomorrow is not guaranteed you can still be responsible, pay your bills and enjoy your life and possessions today.
The desire to hold on to things often comes from a feeling of lack
A feeling that we will never have enough, a fear of losing the last good thing. This fear can drive us to hoard instead of enjoying our belongings.
As a young teenager we didn’t have much and my Mum often made mine and my siblings’ clothes. I remember receiving an invitation to a party. Long skirts were in fashion and my Mum made me a purple midi-skirt specially for the occasion. I didn’t wear it because I felt it had to last. My friend’s mother sent me home to get changed as I had arrived in my old clothes. She was right I would have kept that skirt until it was out of style, my mum’s hard work wasted.
Clear the clutter
One of the keys to living better is getting rid of the clutter. My Mum tends to forget she has nice things because she has so many clothes. I encouraged her to let go of some of the old stuff, so that she could easily find and wear her newer items. I encourage you to do this too, why are you hanging on to that old thing?
My Mum is almost 88 years old. The rainy day is here. Everyday is a special day for you to wear your best clothes too.
“ ‘Saving the best for last’ is only OK if you’re sure of when you’re going kick the bucket. Otherwise, I’m afraid, you could be ‘Saving the best for dust.’ ” ― Mokokoma Mokhonoana