July 2014 “Grab Bag” of Useful Links

As longtime readers of “Recovering Shopaholic” may recall, I used to publish useful links lists on specific topics every Friday (you can see the resources archive here), and I also include links at the end of some standard posts.  Although I’ll probably still do these things on occasion, I’ve decided to consolidate most of my helpful links into a monthly post.

Useful links from around the world

Sharing resources and tips from around the world!

Included below is the July 2014 edition.  This list features articles on the standard “Recovering Shopaholic” topics of shopping, wardrobe management, and style, as well as a few others I think you might enjoy on alternate subjects.  I hope you enjoy this month’s assortment of links.  Please feel free to share any thoughts you have on these articles in the comments section. You’re also welcome to include any other links you feel may interest your fellow readers.

On Shopping and Shopping Psychology

  • Many of us struggle with shopping consciously and wisely during sales.  Jill Chivers recently published her “7 Simple Truths about Sales,” which includes a few pieces of sage advice for navigating the tricky waters of sales shopping.  Many of these tips will be familiar to you (and have been mentioned here), but they definitely bear repeating!
  • There is often a lot of focus (by me and others) on the negative aspects of shopping, but shopping in and of itself is basically a morally neutral activity.  Of course, many of us take it too far such that there are adverse effects, but there are also some benefits to shopping.  Jill Chivers summarizes an article on this topic from “Psychology Today” and outlines five life circumstances in which shopping can be helpful.
  • Lots of articles from Jill Chivers today, but she is writing some of the best stuff out there on shopping psychology!  I love that she reviews a lot of the research and summarizes it succinctly and compellingly.  In one of her recent posts, she summarizes another “Psychology Today” article on the emotions that drive our purchases and how marketers tap into them to get us to buy more.

On Style and Wardrobe Management

  • I write a lot about wardrobe management and have offered various tips on how we can successfully de-clutter our closets and cultivate more workable wardrobes (I’m still working on both of these things!).  I recently discovered a blog series called “Wardrobe Rehab – 6 Steps to Your Perfect Closet.”  This series walks us through the steps of culling, style definition, gathering essentials, closet organization, choosing a color palette, and focusing our shopping.
  • In my June useful links post, I mentioned the “10 Item Wardrobe” approach to minimalist fashion.  While some people swear by swear by such a philosophy, Bridgette Raes isn’t buying it.  Read her alternate tips for gaining control of your closet.
  • If you’re trying to shop your closet more than the stores, you’ll need to learn to better use what you have.  Imogen Lamport gives us lots of ideas in “How to Create More Outfits from your Existing Wardrobe,” as well as some links to click if you want to dig deeper with certain topics.
  • As those who have read my jewelry inventory posts (here and here) know, I have a lot of necklaces.  But what stops me from wearing them more often is not knowing which necklaces work with the various necklines on my tops and dresses. This guest post on “Wardrobe Oxygen” provides lots of tips and visuals to help us wear and enjoy our necklaces.

On Other Topics

  • In all of the busyness and noise of our day-to-day lives, it can be difficult to carve out some space and quiet time for ourselves.  In a recent compelling post (which starts with a quote that particularly resonated with me), Courtney Carver of “Be More with Less” suggests ten ways in which we can cultivate more peace in our fast-paced world.  This article inspired the post I will publish here on Friday, so stay tuned!
  • In the same vein as the link above, “The Minimalists” recently shared their approach to managing email.   Most of us receive more email than we know what to do with and spend far more time on dealing with this influx of information than we’d like.  “Check Email Like a Minimalist” outlines five simple (but not necessarily easy) changes we can all make to stop email from consuming too much of our time and our lives.   I probably won’t commit to suggestion #1, but the others all seem doable, and I’m sure they would be highly effective as well!
  • In response to my “Shopping and Wardrobe Goals for 2014”post earlier this year, a reader shared an article which argues for using systems instead of goals.  I recently re-read that article, “The Case for Having No Goals in Your Life,” and decided to include it here.  Although I’ve been a long-time proponent of setting goals and using the SMART principle, I’m strongly considering giving systems a try for a while instead.  Who knows?  It might work a lot better and cause me less stress and anxiety, too!
  • I share a lot of style-related posts (including one today!) from the always compelling and very prolific Bridgette Raes, but she occasionally writes on alternate subjects.  A few months ago, she recounted the story of how she almost threw in the towel on her business last year.  Fortunately for her – and for all of us who love her posts, she persevered and has achieved far more success than she would have dreamed.  I really needed to read (and re-read!)Don’t Quit Before the Miracle,” as I often get discouraged about blogging as well as other areas of life.  Bridgette didn’t give up and she encourages us not to do so, either!

In Conclusion

I know that the number of links in these posts can be overwhelming, but you don’t have to click through all of them!  The reason I call these monthly installments “grab bags” of useful links is that you can pick and choose the ones you’d like to read and leave the rest.

If you’re like me and suffer from “fear of missing out” (FOMO), you may have to remind yourself that there will always be interesting articles to read (just like there will always be pretty clothes to buy).   We don’t have to read them all (or buy them all) today!  My useful links posts are no exception, so just read the ones you feel most drawn to.

Before You Go – A Few Comments and a Request

Before I go, I’d like to extend a warm thank you to all those who have purchased my book, “UnShopping:  Recovery Solutions from an Ex-Shopaholic.”  If you’ve read the book, I’d really appreciate your taking a few minutes to post a short review on Amazon (thanks to those who have already done so!).  There are 12 reviews so far and it would be wonderful if I could get a few more, as reviews help others decide whether or not a book is right for them.  If you have a bit of time to share your thoughts, it will make a difference – both to me and to future readers.

I really appreciate all of the wonderful discussion that resulted from my last post, “The Folly of it All!”  If you don’t usually read the comments on my posts, you might want to visit the website to read the latest installment, as there is lots of food for thought there!

I’ll be back on Friday with a post on a topic that has plagued me for many years, information overload.  I’ve made some decisions and taken a few powerful actions that I hope will be useful to others who struggle with that issue.  Stay tuned….

16 thoughts on “July 2014 “Grab Bag” of Useful Links

    • Of course I am proud of you – SO proud! I’m extremely impressed with how quickly you were able to do it, too. I guess you were just ready! I’m happy to have played even a small role in your success. I have more to do, too, but we’re well on our way 🙂

  1. I have a lot of trouble with some link lists, not being able to close out the page until I’ve checked all the links! Sometimes I’ll drag the post to a new window and open all the interesting articles in tabs and gradually read through them all (often finding that I’ve already read some of them before). I’m trying to work on finishing things, so I am clicking through and reading what sounds interesting and then closing things out so I can be “done.” If I can’t stand to close out a window, which usually happens when I find a blog that I love, that I want to read pages and pages of, or because I want to really consider the piece and perhaps write a blog post or comment, I’m learning that I should bookmark the page – either in pinterest or in evernote. Otherwise I end up with an excessive number of tabs to read which can be overwhelming!
    Anyway, some interesting links – thanks for sharing.

    • I have the same problem, Joanna. You wouldn’t believe how many tabs I often have open in my browser! My husband makes fun of me about it all the time. I like to share articles with all of you, but I never want it to stress you out. Bookmarking the page in Pinterest or Evernote sounds like a good idea. I have little experience with both of these tools, but it’s something to explore.

  2. I enjoyed the Bridgette Raes article on the 10 piece wardrobe. It is easy to get so hung up on a number that you ignore the reason you’re doing something in the first place.

    • So true, Tonya! The number really isn’t the point, which is why I didn’t stress too much about following Project 333 to the letter of the law. We have to do what’s right for us, rather than following someone else’s prescription. Bridgette, as always, said it really well!

  3. Debbie: More great links! The one on necklines and necklaces is fantastic — I often see people wearing a necklace that is quite lost in (or overwhelms) their clothing. Great illustrations that should help elucidate the mystery of the statement necklace. Interestingly, I am helping a friend update her wardrobe, and I’m using a process similar to “Wardrobe Rehab — Six Steps to Your Perfect Closet” — except I move the color palette to the first step. I think it’s easier to cull your wardrobe if you know “your” color palette at the outset. More or different items might be culled based on what are one’s best colors.

    I really like your “grab bag” posts. You lead me to new resources all the time. Thank you.

    • Glad you liked this post, Dottie. I agree that necklaces can be tricky to wear. I know I struggle with how to best wear them sometimes. I love that you’re helping your friend with her wardrobe. I think you’re right that color should come first. I did think it was strange that it was step #5 in the “Wardrobe Rehab” process. Color should definitely factor into the culling process, which is their step #1. Best of luck to you and your friend – she’s lucky to have you to help her!

  4. Thanks for the links, I usually find a few that I’ve not seen. Today’s link to necklaces was one of the best I’ve seen ( the photos were the perfect addition).

    • Glad you liked the links, Annette. I agree that the necklace article was superb. I have bookmarked it for future reference, as I have too many necklaces that aren’t being worn regularly. I at least want to give them all a chance by knowing how to wear them. Then, if I STILL don’t take them out for regular spins, I will pass them on.

  5. Great post Debbie! I love when bloggers I read on the regular provide access to posts that inspire them. More than once it’s led me to add a blog to my reader.

    • I love being able to share articles and blogs I love with readers of my blog, Melissa. I’ve found that a monthly round-up works well for me and seems to be a good interval for all of you, too.

    • My pleasure, Lisa! I am such a voracious reader (as I wrote in the post I published today) that I always come across great information. Being able to share it makes it even more worthwhile for me!

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