Friday, April 16, 2010

Creative Shopping

I have a cigar box that I covered with a collage. The top cover is a black and white picture of a boy proudly holding up a jar with a frog in it. The lining is an ad of an avocado shaped into a flower with the words ‘delicious ideas are in bloom.’ And inside, well. Inside are magazine photos of my dream closet, an orange wing back chair, an eco-friendly washer and dryer, four brightly colored trench coats, flowers in yummy vases, an African safari vacation, and a giant storage shed on sale for only 499.99!

I listen to music or a book on CD while I shop the Sunday sales, clipping items from my lists. Sometimes I shop willy-nilly through magazines. I place the images in the box affirming “I want this because it delights me or because I’d love to have more storage space or because I….” The operative sentence is “I want it because.”

The art of creative shopping appreciates that I will always want to expand towards my desires. Finally, this Orange County girl can enjoy the thrill of the chase while saving for what really matters: trips to the olive and cheese aisle at Lazy Acres in Santa Barbara. The art of shopping isn’t about buying. It’s about possibility. It’s about the magic of desire for the sake of desire.

Prior to my “I want it because box,” I felt overwhelmed by what I wanted or needed. I worried about how to pay for tires or other necessities. Worry coupled with messages about consumerism (four trench coats?) left me feeling guilty. Somehow I got wanting and spending all mixed up. By releasing the images to the collage box, I’m also releasing any negative feelings – regardless of manifestation. How or if the objects appear in my life is not my concern. The process itself is rewarding. Once I’m done with my shopping spree, I’m done.

One important thing to know about this method is rebel energy. Rebel energy is the part of you that may rail against money boundaries; especially if you spend to mask unexpressed emotions. I give this rebel energy mad money to spend each paycheck. Even $5.00 is fun if I am creative and head for the thrift stores. In fact, I often come away with gems such as my $4.00 Dirt Devil from the Abundance Thrift Shop in Los Osos or last season’s best sellers.