I just love the adrenaline rush of a good deal. I am a consignment sale shopper and I always have to be there on the first day. I stalk all the deals for Black Friday and Presidents day. It's about frugality of course but it's also about getting in on something exclusive. It's a way to belong.
Truth be told I haven't always understood my own value. It is really really hard for me to justify buying things for myself. I would go shopping with friends and pick out things I liked but then talk myself out of them. Do I really need it? No? Probably not. While there aren't a lot of obvious flaws with this mindset-- I mean it's a great way to avoid overfilling your home with stuff, it also has some pitfalls. In the days when I was at my lowest, I even resisted going to the doctor because I didn't think I was worth spending the money on. I didn't think what I was going through was "bad enough". (Note - I had severe undiagnosed Crohn's disease at this point... it was bad enough.) I legit wasn't taking the needed care for myself because I didn't value myself and my needs.
The only reason I got myself to much-needed therapy was because of the EAP. This is a free employee assistance program that allows for several sessions of therapy. There, I started to realize that it's not healthy to have such low self-worth. It's not okay to hold yourself hostage. It's not good to put everyone first and neglect yourself. It IS OKAY to spend money on yourself, or to treat yourself, or to get what you need even if it seems "too expensive" or "frivolous."
All of this to say. I look at deal shopping very differently these days. Of course I am a pragmatist. One should always maximize the available to the best of their abilities, but I was literally denying myself any fulfillment of needs unless it was validated by a discount.
As if to say, I didn't feel "full price" I felt "discounted."
But, I was being too harsh in qualifying needs. I didn't consider self-care an actual legitimate need. It felt too indulgent to do things that could be more convenient if there was a cheaper (more challenging, harder, more time-consuming) alternative. It felt wrong to make choices that could improve my health or well-being, when those are literally the most important "things" to invest in. I had not considered how everything else is basically disposable but we have this one body and one mind and one family for this one life, and that its what really matters. And after going through that health crisis and coming out on the other side, I can finally see it. And now I am fanatical about it. And can't stop talking about it. Because when you discover a real truth, you can't hold it in.
The truth is, this is complicated. We have limited resources. We have lots of things to consider and prioritize. But the thing I am working the hardest on is recognizing my own worth, and the worth of others and practicing generosity to both. I think this can be a good rule to live by.
I'm Lisa Yau