Today’s post kicks off a series of at least two installments on the topics of weight, body image, shopping, and personal style. These subjects have been at the top of my mind lately, as I’ve experienced some weight fluctuations resulting from health challenges and hormonal changes. This has been going on for months now, but sometimes things feel too emotionally raw for me to post about. However, since I realize that I’m not alone in these struggles, I’ve broached the subject in my private Facebook group and will do so here as well.
How does your body image affect your shopping and style?
As someone with a long history of eating disorders (which I wrote about here) and negative body image (I even used to have a blog about that topic – you can now find those posts HERE), it’s very challenging for me to deal with what I’ve been going through lately. What makes it even more problematic is that I don’t really understand the reasons for my body shifts or what to do about them (I’m not overeating and I continue to exercise regularly). It’s often difficult for me to get dressed and I sometimes don’t feel good about how I look at all. I experienced similar issues in the early days of the blog, which I wrote about in this April 2013 post. Interestingly, I could basically write the same words again today, except I also have the specter of turning 50 hanging over my head (just over a month now…).
As I write this, it’s the last day of June and just before the long Independence Day weekend for those of us in the U.S., so it’s the perfect time for another installment of useful links (see previous editions here). But before I delve into the main topic of this post, I’d like to share a recent article that was published about me, this blog, and my books on DealCrunch.com. The writer interviewed me a few weeks ago and I’m very pleased with the finished piece. It’s called “Confessions of an Ex-Shopaholic: How Debbie Roes’ Blog & Books Help Shoppers Kick Their Buying Addiction.” While I consider myself to still be a recovering shopaholic rather than a full ex-shopaholic (as I believe that recovery occurs on a continuum), I’m glad that my insights along the journey have been helpful to so many people over the past 3.5 years. I hope you enjoy this feature!
Included below are links to articles I hope you’ll enjoy on the subjects of shopping and shopping psychology, wardrobe management, style, and personal development. I’m also sharing a few previous “Recovering Shopaholic” posts that you may have missed the first time around (or may choose to revisit now).
Earlier this year, I started a new feature in which I review my purchases a year later to see how well (or not) they have worked out for me. Although I periodically reviewed past purchases previously, I got the idea to review things from a year ago from Mette of “The Yogastic Shopping Planner” (see her most recent edition HERE). Sometimes my purchase updates will cover just one month (as my last one did – I bought a lot in April 2015), but most of the time they will encompass two or three months – or even longer, as was the case with the 2014 review I published last week.
Today I’m going to look back at the items I bought from May through July of last year. Those were fairly moderate shopping months for me, so it made sense to cover them all together. I will share some basic numbers, let you know what I still own, and reflect on which purchases were good and bad and why. I’ll close this update by encapsulating the lessons I learned from reviewing the items I purchased a year ago. I hope that reading this update will inspire you to take a look at your purchases from a year ago to see how well they’re serving you. Taking the time to do such a review can be quite eye-opening and is well worth doing.
In my last post, I gave an update on the purchases I made in 2014 and shared a lot of statistics regarding the success and failure rate of what I bought. At the end of my update, I asked readers to offer insights on their own purchases from two years ago, along with their advice for others on how to increase buying success percentages. I received some great feedback as usual, but one reader named Jane also asked a very thought-provoking question of her fellow readers:
If you have pared down your wardrobe to a point that you’re happy with, what were your top three tools that helped you to do so?”
Since these types of questions can sometimes get lost in the comments section of my posts, I thought I’d pose Jane’s query to my private Facebook group. I knew the group would have many wonderful tips to offer, as there is a wealth of knowledge there. This post represents a consolidation of the group’s top tips for cultivating a workable wardrobe (also check out this two-part series on the blog from back in 2014: Part One | Part Two).
I have done quite a few purchase updates on this blog over the years. I feel it’s helpful to look back at what we bought to see which items were successes and which were failures. When I first started doing such reviews, I did them a few months down the line. However, I’ve come to understand that such a time interval is not long enough for a true analysis in most cases. Thus, I started to review my purchases a year later beginning this year (see HERE and HERE). A full year gives us enough time to see what we are and aren’t wearing and how it’s working out for us.
Since I didn’t do too many purchase updates in the early days of the blog, I thought it would be fun and interesting to look back at some of my earlier purchases. I probably should have started with 2013 (the year I started “Recovering Shopaholic”), but I opted to look back at what I bought in 2014 for this post. I will share my shopping wins, failures, and a few pieces for which it’s not an easy call. I’ll also point out some patterns and lessons among the hits and misses that will help to guide my future purchases.
I have been writing this blog for almost 3.5 years now (here’s my very first post, from January 2, 2013). When I started, I thought it was perhaps a one-year endeavor or maybe two years at the most. I believed that through setting goals and rules and writing about my motivations and behavior, I would overcome my compulsive shopping problem in relatively short order. I never expected to attract as many readers as I have or continue the blog for as long as I have. But the readers came (for which I’m very thankful) and it hasn’t been as easy for me to recover as I thought it would be.
This was a typical scene for me before I started this blog…
Earlier this year, I published two posts on the topic of recovery, both my own and in general:
I also shared insights from my private Facebook group on the causes of members’ shopaholic behavior. These are all great posts that I’m quite proud of, but I’d like to further the discussion today and get more personal about the state of my recovery.
It’s almost the end of May and is the start of a long weekend for those of us in the U.S., so it’s the perfect time for another installment of useful links (see previous editions here). Included below are links to articles I hope you’ll enjoy on the subjects of shopping and shopping psychology, wardrobe management, style, and personal development. I’m also sharing a few previous “Recovering Shopaholic” posts that you may have missed the first time around (or may choose to revisit now).
This “grab bag” of useful links presents the perfect opportunity for you to sit back with your favorite hot beverage or glass of wine and enjoy some quiet time to read, learn, look within, and maybe even laugh a time or two. As a reminder, I certainly do not expect you to click on all of the links in these posts. Just explore the ones that most intrigue you.
Sunset view from Point Loma Nazarene University