Ignore My Goofy Looking Hand

I struggle with a lifelong tendency toward miserly-ish behavior. This isn’t just about money.

It’s about saving EVERYTHING for a who-knows-what future. Food? I will eat the least appetizing things first and then, surprise, have no room left for the thing I most wanted to eat. Clothing I like most? I put off wearing it because once it’s worn (and probably, thanks to my own clumsiness and a small child) and in the wash, it won’t be available again.

In an effort to live a happier life, I’m actively working to resist this tendency.

Is my soup fantastic? I’m going to eat it first.

Am I reading a great book and a mediocre book? Read the great one first. Stop holding the good book ransom.

And now, I wear the clothing I like most, as often as possible.

I made an enormous order from Old Navy a couple of weeks ago and returned everything except this one shirt.

But I love it enough to make up for the ten items I returned.

In fact, I took this picture two weeks ago, and I’m wearing this shirt again today (and I wore it twice on the cruise). And all four times, it made me just unreasonably happy.

Shirt: Old Navy
Jeans: Ross
Sandals: American Eagle

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  • Reply Merrick April 26, 2012 at 1:09 pm

    Pretty shirt! And I think these changes are great. I naturally do some of the same things too ( especially the food one) and I've made a conscious effort to change too. Always nicer to be happier.

  • Reply Saskia April 26, 2012 at 1:12 pm

    I hear an echo of the Happiness Project, right? (I just read the book, so I'm hearing Gretchen Rubin in everything. After I read her book, I had to read Emerson for a PhD seminar and kept thinking of The HP as source, instead of the other way around. I didn't mention that in class.)

  • Reply Laura {a spoonful of joy} April 26, 2012 at 1:32 pm

    ha ha! wow, the more i read of your blog the more i realize how similar we are! 🙂 my family always makes fun of the fact that i save everything. i hardly ever wear my favorite clothes because i'm "saving" them. ridiculous.

  • Reply Jillian April 26, 2012 at 5:26 pm

    I do this, too. But I saw an episode of Oprah once and she talked about why we do that. We save the nice things like the best bath salts and the perfumes and the lotions or the food or the clothes because we want it to stay nice. We want to save it for a rainy day, a special day, a party day. But what if that day didn’t come? What if this thing you kept saving expired? Or was suddenly lost? Wouldn’t we all feel silly then for saving that one thing?

    And I agree. I still do it sometimes but I have gotten so much better. I have even done it with cute little outfits of Lucy’s to then realize oh my goodness, she’s now too big!

    So I will try more if you will try, too. 

  • Reply emandtrev April 26, 2012 at 9:04 pm

    I love that top. Love, love. My problem is that while I wear new clothes, I have a hard time letting go of old ones. I don't consider myself much of a pack rat at all until it comes to my own clothes. Urgh.

  • Reply Heather April 26, 2012 at 9:59 pm

    Such an interesting psychological study you'd make. Even the title of the post. The thing you disliked most about the photo, you point out to everyone, many of whom wouldn't have thought twice about it. Yet we, being the kind of women we are, make note of the deficiency, lest people think we didn't notice it at all. I am with you on the miserly behavior. I'm working on it.

  • Reply Chelsea April 27, 2012 at 2:30 am

    I also like the shirt. Very cute! Occasionally I find something there I just love! I almost always do what I most love first. I just can't resist. If I don't that's all I'm thinking about until I do.

  • Reply lifeofadoctorswife April 27, 2012 at 2:53 pm

    I have been working on a post for months now about my own miserly-ish-ness… Although it's mainly restricted to money, which is why it's hard to write. But it IS a problem and I am so glad that you are taking steps to improve it! And I LOVE that shirt. 🙂

  • Reply Jodi April 27, 2012 at 2:57 pm

    Spend-out! Just like Gretchen Rubin says:) I have the exact same problem, saving things for just the right moment (when is that??) I have that exact shirt and also can't stop wearing it. I love it!

  • Reply Creole Wisdom April 28, 2012 at 2:26 am

    You are darling in stripes 🙂 Don't resist from the fun and good stuff any longer. I feel like it's hard to do, but it's better for us in the long run I think, at least our hearts!

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