Wanting What You Have

While I was wide awake in bed at 2 am last night, I was inspired to start some new projects. Ever since I broke up with my boyfriend three months ago, I’ve been thinking about what I want my life to be like. I love starting new projects and making goals, but it’s been difficult to come up with ones that I want to do and that I feel like will change my life for the better. I want to live authentically and try as hard as I can to practice the kind of advice I give to others.

Advice like wanting what you have and valuing experiences over things is what I targeted last night. I recently read a blog post about a girl who did not buy anything for an entire year and saved close to $12,000 (https://www.theguardian.com/money/blog/2016/nov/26/no-spending-year-over-new-way-living-wealthier-wiser) . I don’t think I could undergo a project that extreme, but it did get me thinking about my purchasing habits. After the breakup, I spent a lot of time trying to fill the hole in my life with unhealthy things like eating deserts and carbs and buying clothes and books. They are things that temporarily make me feel better, but in the long run are pretty bad for me.

My purchasing weaknesses are clothes and books. I don’t buy expensive clothes or books, but I easily spend thousands at Half-Price Books and sale or clearance clothing every year. There’s something about sales that really appeals to me and makes me feel less guilty about buying stuff that I don’t need. I have more unread books in my house than I could possibly read in a year (and I read 60 books on average each year). My clothing doesn’t fit in one closet and there are things that I haven’t worn in years—not because I don’t like them, but because I have far too many clothes. I don’t need any more books or clothes, though I often want to buy them to feel happy.

Happiness, though, stems from experiences not from things.

So, here is the year-long project I am undergoing starting today:

1) For an entire year, I will not buy any clothes

2) For an entire year, I will buy only one book per month

Because I am a little obsessed with rules, I’m allowing myself two exceptions for the first resolution (but only for special occasions or unique items, such as souvenirs while traveling) and one exception for the second (like favorite authors who come out with new books in the same month).

It’s going to be a challenge, but I think I will be happier and will save money I can use for a fun experience, like travel.

If anyone else is motivated to join me on this quest, please post below! Even if you don’t see this post for days or months or years later, I invite you to learn more about yourself and increase your happiness as well.