Woe to the malls, I know.
For the better part of the last decade, shopping makes me happy. There is something about the feel and smell of new clothes and bags. The moment you unwrapped it from the tissue the saleslady lovingly wrapped around your purchase, the crisp sharp edges of the paper bags and the tiny ribbons they tie around the handles instead of using generic tape to seal the bag.
-- Not mine but ooooooh how I wish
It was a present from me to me. And I got lots of presents everytime I hit the shopping stretch on this tiny island.
Expanding my collection of clothes and bags was not a problem, especially after I started working. I had income, and I justified the purchases.
"Oh I need it for work"
"You dress for success!"
"I know it is expensive but I'm going to use it a gazillion times so the average cost per use is low! It's affordable"
Now, I can't. I look at them, and with a sad knowing smile I peel myself away from the shops. I no longer have room nor money for any purchases. I recently found old clothes I haven't worn in years (!) and they are in great condition. Probably from the lack of wear and tear anyway.
I feel shame, and mostly guilt towards myself for wasting thousands of dollars that are now newly folded or hung in my closet.
I am self centered, yes. People would say, "Oh you could have donated all the things you don't need anymore, or just donated the money you spent."
But I am a hoarder. I still love my purchases, I just didn't use them as frequently as I should. And I'm in no financial state to donate hundreds of dollars every month to the charities. It should have gone towards some investment for my future. I am the charity case.
I guess these are just some things I realise now. Have you ever felt like you're not earning enough for the lifestyle you want to have?