Shopping brings me all kinds of anxiety… While it is fun and I thoroughly enjoy spending time with loved ones and getting fun, new pieces to add to my wardrobe I can’t seem to shake the small twinge of nervousness I get when I enter a new store; and well, I don’t want to feel that anymore. So what did I do? I looked beyond the initial feeling to see why I felt that way and how I could “fix it” …This post is an “organized” view of those thoughts.
I like to tell myself that lately, it’s not nearly as bad (which has a lot to do with being more comfortable with who I am becoming and where or, more rather, Who I am getting my “self worth” from). But, it is definitely still there; and I think I have found the root…s…
- Sizes. I have not always been the healthiest of people… I didn’t care about what foods I put in my body, what chemicals/lotions I put on my body, my workout schedual was inconsistent and almost non-existent, the list is endless (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)… so, for the longest time whenever I would go into a store and head to the dressing room the clothes that I would grab never fit right the first time. It would take multiple trips and changing out sizes to find something that worked and by that point I was tired and just wanted to go home. Now, even with the sizes going the other way I am more aware of it and notice smaller things… turns out, sizes can always be a struggle.
- Modesty. Honestly (sadly) I never really paid attention to this word before. When you are already uncomfortable and struggling just to find something you (or I) end up settling for anything that is comfortable and “fits.” No one wants to grab and even bigger size… Now that God has blessed me with an amazing group of people who support me in the healthy habits I am “collecting” the sizes that I used to be “scared” of and squeeze into, I now have a new appreciation for. Knowing that I can fit into a smaller size is nice, sure… but, now I find myself gravitating towards those bigger sizes anyway. When I’m trying something on and it is cute but maybe… not… entirely 100% fitting to my standards and can feel myself starting to “compromise” in it’s favor I start feeling extremely self-conscious and uneasy and then as soon as I slip back into the clothes I came in I feel like I can breathe again. It is so much more important to me to know that what I am wearing is bringing glory to God (1 Timothy 2:9-10) and to be comfortable than to concern myself with “matching the world.”
- Money. I don’t know if you have noticed buuut… shopping costs money. I grew up in over-sized, worn-in, hand-me-downs. I got a new shirt or two and maaaybe some socks for the new school year. I am the kind of person who will spend thirty minutes in a store walking around looking at everything, even carrying a few pieces around with me, only to finally decide that I can live without whatever it is I am carrying. I go through a list in my head: price, quality, what I can wear it with, when and how many times will I actually wear it and so on… (unless it is something I truly need) it usually takes someone being with me to convince me to just buy the shirt. Let me tell you… clearance racks and “out of season” stuff are both pretty high up on my list of favorite things. Learning and practicing frugality is just one of the many things I am grateful for in this season of my life; but, also that God provides so abundantly for us to enjoy this wonderful life He has given us and we should not feel “guilty” for accepting that gift (Philippians 4:19).
- Time. This one, I’ll agree, is kind of silly. But, whenever I find myself shopping, and taking thirty minutes to decide on what to buy, I can’t help but realize I could be spending my time doing something more “productive” …I am learning house hold duties will (always) still be there, but, the opportunity to make memories with people I love, won’t.
So… yes, something as natural and mundane (and silly) as shopping used to burden me… and now you know that. The point of sharing all of this with you? Well, I guess that I hope to encourage you. I pray that when you examine yourself and find something that burdens you and wish that it didn’t, that you won’t feel silly. That you will lift it up to God and reach out to those you love and ask for their advice/their help/their counsel.
Is there something that you struggle with that you see as “silly?” Who is someone that you trust, that you can share it with? (If you can’t think of anyone… please feel free to e-mail me.)
Have you “dissected” it? What factors contribute to it?
How do you navigate godly modesty in today’s fashion culture?
Is shopping a good/relaxing or bad/stressful experience for you?
What stores have you found that are your favorites and work for you? (I’m curious!)
Until next time; I pray your day, every day, is blessed.