The need for a new pair of work pants drove me to the mall on a Thursday. Chatter from the co-workers had led me to believe that there was usually a sale on Thursday at one of the department stores and yay they were right. 20% off woohoo. So with work pants purchase achieved I decided to have a little browse, a little wander, around the rest of the mall.
What was I thinking? Oh my, all the pretty things. Shoes, I could use another pair of shoes and winter coats are in stock, gorgeous woollen pea coats with wooden buttons. The lights were bright and the smell of doughnuts was wafting up from the food court. The new homeware store had some new funky looking cushions on display and all of sudden I was thinking about buying a new couch. I WANTED ALL THE THINGS and I hate that it made me feel like that.
Does this ever happen to you? You go to the store to purchase something specific and find that your desires are being stimulated by all the bright lights and pretty things. When I’m at home, or work, or with my family I don’t even think about shopping or things I want. Its only if something breaks, or wears out that I begin to ponder a trip to the shops.
Lets face it, malls are desire stimulating machines, they are designed to make you browse and lust after items. Craftily staged window displays or furniture arrangements make you long for something as attractive in your own home. Theses are desires for items I didn’t even know existed until I went to the mall. How can you have a burning desire for something you didn’t even know existed until just now?! I wasn’t sitting at home yesterday thinking “damn my life would be way more complete if a I had an antique copper frame kitchen pendant light”. The mall is a crazy place it makes me greedy and wanty!
And thats why I have to severely limit my trips to malls. I am happy and content with my home and what I have until I go to a mall.
If you find yourself swayed by pretty things, if your credit card spending is out of control, then you need to go on a mall diet. We’re talking complete mall restriction!
5 ways to put yourself on a Mall diet.
- Shop for groceries at cheap supermarket not attached to mall. I visit our local Pak N Sav which doesn’t really have any other shops nearby. Shopping for food is a necessity so don’t let it become contaminated with the expectation of having a browse of other shops.
- Change your commute so you no longer drive past your favourite shops. It may take you a few minutes longer, but out of sight is out of mind.
- Only allow yourself to shop for replacement or worn out items. When you go to the mall you are ONLY there to find and purchase the required item. If you see something else you want put it on a list and go home. Decide later in the week if you really need the item.
- No more going to the mall for “fun”. No recreation browsing or window shopping. No going just to see whats new. NO. Find yourself a hobby that’s better for you than just looking at stuff you might want to buy. Shopping shouldn’t be anyones major hobby let alone something you do when you are bored.
- Don’t meet friends at the mall, if you want to meet for coffee or a cheap meal find somewhere stand alone, better yet, invite them to your place! There are hundreds of ways to hang out with friends that are not shopping related.
If your focus is becoming financially independent then with a mall diet and a bit of reflection eventually you’ll become immune to malls. Your desire to shop will drop away and the mall will become a rather boring place.