Monday, November 26, 2012

Clothes, income and my style.


For most of my growing up years, I have always dressed simply – Most of the time, I am one of those sloppy dressers who wear T shirts and Bermudas for lessons in NUS.

One of the reason I give myself to not dress better is really because I was living on pocket money – I can’t be spending my mom’s hard earned money from working more than 10 hours a day on looking good?

This perhaps explains why this recent few years, my friends may find that my style has been a little one the wild side (or mildy put: funky) for them to accept.  Cause I feel that I now make my own money.

The end result: Over this 3.5 years of working, I owned over 21 button shirts – T Shirts are even more countless because of the sheer number of events that I joined.

What are some of the thoughts that hold me back from clearing them?

  •            I have been reluctant to clear them away via donation to Salvation Army mainly is because these shirts cost me money – even if they are cheapo event T shirts of lousy material.  I just feel that to get  my money’s worth, I have to wear them  out even before I donate them! 
  •           This probably has got to do with my younger years in childhood and teenage whereby money was not aplenty.


Why do I suddenly want to clear away so many of clothes?

  •      It is really the entire “Less is more” movement I am into this 30th year after reading “The Power of Less” and “Steve Jobs Biography”.  I kind of believe that less things in our life helps to clear up our thoughts.
    •  How does more items in life create a more cluttered mind?  Deciding what to wear when you have many clothes to choose from is just many of the small decisions that we have make throughout the day that can lead to decision fatigue.
      •  This is perhaps with a linkage to our evolutionary past as hunter gathers that our ancestors never had much material stuff, and our brain is not wired for so many possessions.
  • Because I have the time now to think and slowly savor.
  • For the environment – the less things I owe, the less resources I consume. And this is really what I use to motivate myself to donate things that are still rather new  – for a completely new race event shirt that I don’t really want to wear can go and clothe another poor individual.


How to make new buys?
  •      Looking bacd, I realized that in the past, there were really a couple of times where I bought things that may not have fitted that well because they were on discount. 
    • It could be due to my slightly not well off childhood or simply the entire consumer culture that lead me to behave that way.
  • So now it must really be:
    •  Does it fit well? ( I used to buy clothes that may be a little big because it is on a discount)
    • Does it look nice?
  • We often are keen to buy things at a discount because we believe that it will save us money that will allow us to buy more things. However, if I only want to own a few items – I really don’t need more things. And seriously, I can’t get round to finish wearing all the clothes if I have too many. 
There is something else that peeves me about buying things that are too cheap.  I remember seeing these 3 watches that are going for $10 at Chinatown.  $10 bucks! I walked away depressed because I just thought that at the back, how may workers are underpaid, what safety standards are being ignored and what environmental pollution is not being managed.

Hence my new mantra will really be:

Buy LESS, Buy Well.

We do not need that many items in our life – we can do with less and we will feel more relaxed for it.

Buy well and not merely just for discount so that someone else is compensated fairly and hopefully my item will last for a long time that I need not buy a new one for years – so far I only have faith in Patagonia for that.  Let me continue my experiments on brands and update again.

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