Day 7/366: Addicted to the Purchase High?

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I’ve now done a week without buying any new clothes, although obviously I had two online shopping parcels arrive on Saturday.  I have however bought some perfume online today which isn’t so good (although the perfume smells gorgeous – I have samples already).

What I want to know is why I feel such a compulsion to buy things all the time. What is it in me (and in many others) that makes us such acquisitive beings?  In today’s Guardian Suzanne Moore talks about the now famous book by Marie Kondo called Spark Joy which muses on how we should only keep things in our life which bring us joy, and get rid of all the other clutter.

Well lots of things in my life don’t bring me joy, but are essential to every day life: things like dog poo bags or floor cleaner or sellotape, so I’m not sure that I go with this argument.  However Moore makes a good point at the end of the article when she says:

But the decluttering industry can’t deal with the broader aspect of why we feel so out of control in our own homes. After all, we have merely done as we were told: consumed. Now, it has become excessive, and we are swimming in our own tat. Is this elevation of tidying enough to stop the circle of shopping, of built-in obsolescence, of fashion, of our complete lack of connection to where any of our products come from?

To be free from this cycle may indeed be magical. The illusion that it is up to each of us individually to sort this out may be comforting. But liberation from the mess we have made is about more than a neat sock drawer.

And clothes bring me joy most of the time, but actually looking at it objectively, maybe it’s the *act of acquisition* that brings me joy.  I love trying on clothes and shoes and imagining wearing them during exciting or satisfying moments of my life.

Unfortunately, the reality of wearing clothes in my life is never as good as the imagined and I end up with an overstuffed wardrobe full of lovely clothes for which there aren’t necessarily the occasions to wear.  If the best I felt about the clothes was at the moment I purchased them, well really, what is the point?

It’s as if we are being sold the instant of purchase rather than the actual item we are buying.  Spending money can sometimes be seen as an almost sexual turn on. So is it the act of spending money not the thing itself that brings me joy?

This may be why I find myself making so many purchases; am I addicted to the purchase high?  If so, this is something that needs addressing as it is seriously disordered behaviour.  Consumerism is fucking me up.

 

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5 thoughts on “Day 7/366: Addicted to the Purchase High?

  1. I’ve just got the KonMari book, can’t put it down, determined to give it a whirl.. Especially re clothes.. Will pass it on once finished with it 🙂 xx

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  2. Yep. I KNOW it’s the high of buying that I get off on, not the actual purchases. Often I leave a parcel days before looking at it, and if a few parcels arrive at once I actually feel a bit sick. I’m pleased with myself for digging out 6 bin bags full of stuff to give to the charity shop and am working on spending less in the future. I used to have the thought process of ‘Oh, if it doesn’t suit me I’ll sell it’ but I rarely have the energy for that, so the only answer is to buy less. xx

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    1. It’s a horrible feelig that we have been suckered by capitalism in this way. We are addicts as much as anyone who smokes or takes drugs is.

      I’m glad it’s not just me that does that with parcels. I often feel ashamed when more than one arrives, especially when they are delivered to work as I get comments about my spending! I know it’s wrong but it’s so hard to stop hence why I’ve bought perfume with my Evans refund rather than putting it towards paying off my Visa bil!!!

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      1. Oh I am SOOOO glad I am not the only one. I feel so ill when I get heap of parcels and the look I get from Heath.. I certainly feel ashamed at my actions. I have even hidden parcels or tried to get to the front door first. God. If that isn’t an indicator that I need help I don’ t know what is.

        XOXOOX

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