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Things I Really Wanted But Didn’t Buy

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Friends! I made it through week one of my spending freeze. The biggest impact so far has been the increasing awareness of just how often I feel compelled to buy things I don’t truly need. As part of my work with clients, I am often sourcing products from my favorite stores, so temptation is everywhere. As planned, I’ve been jotting down all of the things I really want to buy. When I see something I want, I notice the urge, write down the item that I want, and (get this!) walk away. Apparently, saving money can be just that simple. Below I’m sharing all of the things I saw, and wanted, but did not buy this month.

A one month spending freeze challenge is difficult. Here's all the things I did not buy, but wanted to!

This Travel Bag // This Pepper Mill // This Hand Soap // This Book // This Basket

While I love all of these items to bits, I do not actually need any of them. I have hand soap and coffee table books, and handbags and baskets. I own a pepper mill that grinds pepper perfectly well. A friend of mine recently shared that she travels with a little list of things she needs and only allows herself to buy those specific items when she’s out shopping. I don’t have a nice matching set of mixing bowls so I’m keeping gorgeous bowls on my list for a future investment.

What’s become very apparent is that even though I consider myself a minimalist, this spending freeze exercise has made me aware of how often I think about material things. I’m often on the hunt for the perfect thing, and I spend time buying things, styling things, contemplating things, organizing things, and inevitably returning things.  It takes a lot of mental energy.

My goal for the next few weeks of my experiment is to go on a real “thing vacation,” and take a break from contemplating things and from buying them. The hope is that I will have tons of mental energy freed up for other things that I care about.

Of course I’ll keep you posted, and I’d love to hear about your personal experiences trying out a spending freeze, or shifting your mindset about consumerism.


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2 comments on “Things I Really Wanted But Didn’t Buy

  1. This is a really good article, since it captures the fact that most of us have to put conscious effort into resisting the urge to buy — in this commercial economy, it is a challenge because the “stores” are open 24 hours a day online and my impulse buying ramps up late at night.

  2. This is a great family project for Lent. Ash Wednesday begins tomorrow, February 14th and continues until Easter, April 1. I am an Amazon junkie and was so ashamed of my credit card bill yesterday! I’m in!

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