Here’s the thing: I just about never spend money on myself, as far as clothes and things go. I tend to wear the same things year after year until, of course, they wear out. Even then, I’ll cling to them until the bitter end. I find this especially true with shoes. They get so worn in and comfy and fit my feet perfectly. However, they also get tattered, torn, and literally fall apart. I’m looking at you, Sanuk Junebugs! (Best shoes ever!)
So recently I bought some new clothes from Kohls and Amazon. They weren’t even second-hand. I really like them, and I feel good about myself in them. This is what good clothes do, right? They inspire self-confidence, which spawns happiness and so on. I even bought a new pair of Chucks, which I haven’t worn in close to ten years. Then I spent some money on some new make-up.
My point is this: I think I’m feeling guilt over all this spending. I think this is likely unwarranted.
I do my budget on mint.com. According to them, I spend the same amount every six months to a year on clothing that most families spend in a month. I found that hard to believe, but that’s what the site says. Of course, I don’t know how well that site represents the true population and all of that, but it’s the best data I have available.
I suppose I’m trying to find the line between being good to myself and, indeed, feeling good about myself but not falling prey to greed, excess, or even vanity. Knowing myself as I do, I doubt I’ll ever reach these traits, but I think it is wise to stop and check myself every now and then.
At what point does necessity blur into frivolity? And is there anything wrong with a bit of frivolity once in awhile? Bottom line: am I still living simply? Certainly, compared with the majority of the world’s population I am not. Compared with most Americans, I would say yes, I am. But I’m not at all sure I want to compare myself with the status quo of Americans.
I’m not much of a philosopher, I’m afraid. But these questions keep going round in my head. Maybe I’ll reach a conclusion one of these days. 5 days ago