Retail in December

Retail is a hard job, especially so in December, the busiest shopping time of the year. There are ways that salespeople can make it more pleasant. The best way they can make it more pleasant is by being pleasant! I have a few examples of how this is being done, and how it isn’t.

I just shopped in a kitchen store and experienced great customer service from a salesperson, and poor service from the owner. Go figure! The salesperson was friendly and helpful, while the owner did not even acknowledge my presence, although she should know me given that I shop in her store often, and usually call her by name. The very least she should have done is speak to me, even if she did not use my name. But she didn’t, and not because she was busy; but because she isn’t friendly. I think I will take my kitchen shopping elsewhere. While I don’t expect someone to gush all over me, I do like my presence acknowledged, and my business appreciated.

Recently I observed two women who were upset with a waitress who was less than friendly to them, although they are regular customers of the restaurant, and she knows them well. But the waitress did not smile, did not make eye contact, and did not speak as she gave them their check. The woman sitting next to me said, “I will let my displeasure show in my tip; she does not deserve a tip.” Sometimes customers do show their displeasure in monetary ways.

Just this morning a friend and I met for breakfast at a local diner. The food was great. The service was slow, but they were busy. The waitress was friendly and service-oriented. Although the standard in that diner is to pay at the register, my friend wanted her check and credit card picked up, taken to the register, and brought back to her, although we were in a diner! The waitress got the message and took the customer service high road. We put our credit cards on the table and the waitress picked them up and took them to the register for us. That is a great example of service, doing what the customer preferred even when it was not the restaurant’s standard. And done with a smile.

Retail is hard work, very hard work. There are as many, if not more, rude customers as there are less than friendly and sometimes rude salespeople. But the salesperson has a higher calling than the customer, like it or not. A friend of mine once said to me, when I was teaching customer service principles to staff in various companies, “When are you going to teach customer service principles to the  customer?!” Well, sorry, but it just doesn’t work that way. Even now when the need is even greater for customers to be nice to service personnel due to the shortage of wait staff and service personnel, even with all of the signs in businesses asking customers to “just be nice.” The onus is still on the service person to be friendly and service-oriented. The customer may get by being less than friendly or even rude, whether they should be or not. The salesperson is representing the business, and at all times should be friendly, helpful, and service-oriented. And the mere idea that the business owner is not setting the customer service standard! In those cases, let’s take our business elsewhere since the loss of business may be the only way some of those business owners will become service oriented.

Although retail is hard work, it can be rewarding work. Serving customers with a smile, being friendly, and doing all that one can to meet the customers’ needs and even (unrealistic) expectations, can pay big dividends, and not just monetarily.

It feels good to be nice to people. It feels even better when one is nice and friendly, and that attitude is returned in similar behavior from the customer. And yes, it feels good to receive above-average tips, and for the customer to commend the salesperson to others, including management. We do live in a world of reciprocity. What goes around does come around, eventually.

Watch for good service, and compensate it appropriately. Also, watch for poor service, and take your business elsewhere. And keep your cool all the while!

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Minding Our Manners

We have all heard it; “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.” So often we fail to follow this adage, however, and say something that falls in the “feel good behavior” category, behavior that feels good to us, and cuts into another person. Why? Are we really trying to put the other person down, or build ourselves up? Or are we just not thinking? Are we intentionally being mean? If we really are not in general mean people, what benefit do we derive from saying things that hurt others? Something to think about.

We just celebrated one major holiday, and have others coming up. Did you mind your manners? Did you say things to others that were hurtful? Did you talk negatively about some family members to other family members? If so, how did that feel? While you may have felt justified, and in fact may have made a valid point, how did that contribute to the overall goodwill that all were gathered to celebrate? Perhaps we need to look within and figure out our motive for making such comments.

Holidays are stressful enough without having to deal with behavior from others that is negative or inappropriate in other ways. Drinking too much is not a way to celebrate, it is a way to embarrass not just yourself but others. Be better than that. When the family gathers, drives long distances and deals with long delays in traffic, and works hard for days, spending a lot of money on food to feed the crowd, respect that contribution, and don’t do anything to detract from that. Mind your manners.

Hopefully, your Thanksgiving holiday was peaceful and joyful, and none of the inappropriate behavior written about above occurred at your gathering. Then consider this message nothing more than a reminder of gracious behavior. If, however, you find anything in this message that you or others you know need to improve, consider this a gentle and compassionate reminder to do so. So your next gathering is filled with only positive behavior that builds others up.

One of my speaker heroes, Elizabeth Jeffries, made this comment many years ago: “We are called to disturb the comforted and comfort the disturbed.” This message may do both. And be not mistaken, this message is as much for me as anyone else.    

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Changing Again

I hesitate to talk about WW, or Weight Watchers, as I still refer to it, although the company changed its name to WW a few years ago. I hesitate to talk about Weight Watchers in this blog because of the Thanksgiving holiday that most of us will celebrate this week. There will be food galore, and although we do not have to eat it all, many of us will eat more than we normally do. That is why I weighed in for my mandatory monthly weight-in on Sunday, so I have time to reconcile the pound or two I may gain before it is time for me to weigh in again.

So why I am talking about Weight Watchers in this blog? Simply because the company is a great example of change. WW has changed again, and they do so at least once a year. Since I recognize some of my readers are not WW people, I will focus on why WW changes, and not other aspects of WW, of which I am passionate. I really am passionate about WW. I have been a WW member (off and on for some years) for more than forty years, and truly believe it is the only plan that works for me. But enough about that. Let’s talk about change.

WW changed its eating plan again, which they do about once a year. The new plan is simpler, but I was fine with the plan that was replaced, and wondered why they changed the plan again, and asked the WW leader in our meeting on Sunday about that. Her answer was, “WW follows the science, and they decided the plan was not working as it was intended, so they made some changes.”  I accepted that as valid, and my mind immediately went to other things.

How often do we change something that isn’t working? Are we more likely to hang on to what isn’t working, hoping it will work eventually? Maybe not you, but I do. I have several examples of that in mind right now. I am stubborn, and when I lock into something, it is hard for me to change. I need to be more like WW and change what isn’t working.

You might rightly ask, “How do I know something isn’t working, and how long do I give it?” Well, there is no magical answer to this. But let’s be honest. We know, and we even know when the time is up and it is time to make a different decision. We just fail to shift, for a variety of reasons. Or maybe you don’t fall in this category. Maybe you are better at this than I am. You know which group you are in. What matters is that you are honest with yourself.

You are likely familiar with the Serenity Prayer. The part of that prayer that fits in this discussion is the “God Grant Me the Courage to Change the Things I can.” Yes, change does require courage. It is easier (or at least we think it is) to keep on keeping on, even when something isn’t working. We do get set in our ways.

I am reminded of something a colleague of mine, Marilyn Moats Kennedy, said years ago: “The Only One Who Really Likes Change is a Wet Baby!” Funny, but not totally true. Some of us think we are change-oriented, and that we like change. Well, what we really mean is that we like change that we think we can control. And so much of change is outside of our control.

But one change that is totally within our control is our behavior. So, what will we do, what changes will we make, to be the best version of ourselves?

What I am going to do is be less resistant to change, paying attention to what isn’t working, and making course corrections quicker than is often comfortable.

What about you? You do not need to answer me, but by all means, answer this question for yourself.

Enjoy your Thanksgiving holiday. In spite of all of our challenges, there is still much to be thankful for.

I am thankful for you, my dear readers. I appreciate you following my blog and occasionally letting me know your thoughts about it. I am very thankful for you.  

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Thankful, Grateful, and Blessed

Next week many families gather for a time of food and fellowship. Our family will also, although we will be smaller in number than in some years. I think our highest number of family members and friends who have come together through the years is sixty-five. Yes, sixty-five! All seated, all with china turkey plates, sterling, and crystal. And lots of good food. This year we are going to the beach, and there will be thirty-eight of us. It will be a change for our family, going to the beach, without all of the resources, such as cooking items, we have had. But it will be fine, regardless. If we are missing something we think we need we will either get creative, go buy it, or do without it. After all, it really is just stuff, and stuffing!

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. It is more about the people who gather together than the food, although the food is always delicious. And although most years our extended family has gathered in Raleigh for Thanksgiving, it really isn’t about where we are, as long as we are together. We will miss not having Dad and Uncle Barry with us, both of who passed away in recent years. We will miss having some other family members with us as well, who are not making the trip for various reasons. Those of us who gather will continue our traditions while making new ones.

We all know that while the holidays with family are wonderful, they can also be stressful. If we remember why we make the effort to get together, and it really isn’t about the food, and mind our manners, we can have an enjoyable and nourishing (in more ways than food) time. You may not need to be reminded of this, but I know I do!

We have so much to be grateful for, in spite of our challenges, and we should not lose sight of that. I remember, as you do as well, the one or two years that COVID precluded us from getting together. This season of togetherness is to be treasured. We never know when some in our midst this year may be gone from us next year.

Let’s remember those less fortunate than us, and reach out and give to those in need. Let’s keep any negative thoughts to ourselves, refusing to let anything dampen the little time we have with loved ones. Let’s jump in and do our part to make our celebration come together, not allowing a few to carry the load for the rest of us. When we close the door on Thanksgiving 2022 let’s all be able to proclaim it was a wonderful time together.

For if we have family that chooses to get together, we are Grateful, Thankful, and Blessed.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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A Lovely Time in Charleston

Mike and I traveled to Charleston for a few days, celebrating his birthday while we were there. It was a lovely trip. I had not been to Charleston for perhaps ten years and had forgotten how much I enjoy the city. I vowed to not let so much time pass again without a visit to this wonderful city.

The weather was unseasonably warm, with breezes to break the heat. I walked several miles each day, and Mike walked a lot also. We ate some delicious food and had several things that we both said were the best that we have had. We walked to most of the restaurants where we ate. That, of course, limited our choices, but we had plenty of good food. 

The first night we ventured out to a restaurant recommended by the hotel, the East Bay Biergarten. I was out of our room, and we were on our way when I realized that I had left my phone at the hotel. I did not need my phone, but then, what does need have to do with our phone obsession? I had to make myself get comfortable with being without my phone for an hour or two. I decided that there was absolutely no reason that I needed my phone during that time. I was proud of myself for making that decision.

The next morning, I left for my walk and forgot my AirPods.  Since I enjoy listening to podcasts and books on Audible while I walk, I almost went back to the room to retrieve them. I decided that I should just enjoy the scenery all around me, and not be engrossed in a book or podcast that could detract from my enjoyment of the city on my walk. So, I left the AirPods in my room and kept walking. I was so glad that I did. I realized that I probably miss the magic of too many moments due to technology accompanying me on my walks.  

One of the highlights of our trip was lunch with Mike’s cousin, Spike, and his wife Cam at their lovely home. Cam prepared a delicious meal for us, and we were nurtured by the good food and wonderful conversation. I am reminded of the gift of time and family and do not want to take either for granted.

We had another special meal with friends from Raleigh at Tavern and Table in the Shem Creek area of Mt. Pleasant. While we missed seeing all the water around the restaurant due to the arrival of Daylight Savings Time, we had a wonderful meal and visit with friends.

The only shopping I did while in Charleston was at the Market, which I frequented several days, although I did not purchase anything. One just has to go to the Market while in Charleston, but as I have learned from my year of no spending (2006,) shopping does not have to involve spending.

Charleston has many beautiful hotels, and we stayed in different ones on our previous trips. On this trip, we stayed at Liberty Place, a Hilton Club property, and it was one of the nicest hotels we have stayed in anywhere. We will definitely choose Liberty Place on our next trip to Charleston.

I would be remiss if I failed to mention the friendliness of the people in Charleston. From hotel staff to restaurant staff and salespeople in stores, all were friendly, in a southern charming kind of manner.

This trip reaffirmed why Charleston is considered the number one city in the United States by Travel and Leisure Magazine, a designation it has held for ten consecutive years. Wonderful restaurants, beauty, easy walkability, and great shopping are just a few of the reasons for its attraction.

But don’t just take my word for it. Head on over to Charleston while fall is in full swing and judge for yourself.     

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Knowing When To Quit

It is time to write this week’s blog, and the well is dry. I reviewed my November 2021 blogs, looking for inspiration, and I found it. Last November I wrote about the importance of commitment. Commitment is on my mind again, from a different angle. How does one who is a person of commitment know when it is time to quit? When does commitment become an excuse?

I am a person of commitment. That does not mean that I always get it right. What it does mean is that I have a hard time letting go. The “letting go” can be of people as well as things. It has also included a career and a job. I know where this difficulty in letting go comes from. I grew up in a very dysfunctional family, where stability was lacking and alcoholism thrived. I know how to hang on. I just don’t know when it is time to let go. Or maybe, I know when it is time to let go, I just don’t let go. At some level, I think I believe that if I just work harder at whatever it is that isn’t working, it will work. What I am realizing more and more is that it isn’t only about me.

People who grow up in an alcoholic home tend to be controlling. The controlling can be of people and situations. While we all know it isn’t possible to control another person, that the only person we can control is ourselves, we too often try anyway. The result is that we end up being disappointed, angry, and in general unhappy. All because our controlling behavior isn’t working. And we shouldn’t expect it to.

So, does this mean we are no longer people of commitment? No. It just means that our commitment to ourselves has to take priority over what other people do or do not do. Our focus needs to be on ourselves, not in a selfish way, but in a manner of trying to only control ourselves and our own behavior. This must include managing our expectations so that we are not continually disappointed by the behavior or actions of others.    

I don’t have clarity yet on when it is time to quit, other than it is time to quit trying to control others. I also have clarity in knowing that our first responsibility as adults is to ourselves. If we work harder on ourselves than anything or anyone else, clarity about the rest will come. It always does.

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Changing For the Better

You have probably experienced this. Sitting in church on a different side than you normally sit on. Mike and I arrived at church on Sunday a little late and found it best to sit on the opposite side of the church from where we normally sit. I was immediately struck by how strange that felt. My mind became aware that I felt strange due to this small difference in my normal routine. I have used this example in speaking about change through the years, yet I haven’t felt it in many years, I suppose because I have not changed this sitting routine. I was reminded of the power of habits, and the importance of intentionally changing small things often enough that when large changes happen to us, changes we can’t control, we are better able to deal with them.

Another change that is all around us. The leaves are changing colors and falling, which is nature’s way of preparing us for the dormancy that soon follows. I can’t imagine going from the heat and luscious foliage of the spring and summer to winter without passing through changes of the fall. As much as I love spring and summer, I have a physical response to the beauty of the leaves changing. I feel the change in my body. The beauty of each of the four seasons is stimulating. Imagine the boring sameness if we only had one season. I know there are states in our country that actually have that sameness. But North Carolina is not one of them, thankfully.   

What about us? Are we stuck in one “season?” Or are we changing? For it is in changing that we grow. And in growing, we become someone different. Granted, all “different” is not positive, but much is.

Personal change is not easy. It is much easier to keep on keeping on, doing the same things with the same people, going to the same places. Getting outside of our comfort zone is required to make personal change. Consistent behavior change is necessary for new habits to replace the old. And the even harder part is maintaining the change. Just about when we think we have mastered the new behavior change, boredom sets in, and it is easy to revert back to old ways.

Is there a behavior change you want to make? Maybe there is a behavior change you do not just want to make, but need to make. What is your stimulus for doing so? What will you do to increase the likelihood that you will be successful in making the desired change?    

There is no better time to start than now. Just where you are. While the urge is present. Before you talk yourself out of it.

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With Only a Little Time Left in 2022

With Halloween just over two weeks away and the holidays of November and December soon to follow, it is time to focus on our priorities in this last quarter of 2022. It is hard to believe that we have another year about to end. If I asked you to go back to January of 2022 and review your resolutions for this year, what would you find? How successful have you been with what you had planned for this year? Perhaps you should review those, and see what is feasible to accomplish in this last quarter.

October, November, and December are busy months. The holidays of these three months add to the frenzy of our normally busy lives. Before we get caught up in the frenzy, it is good to take stock of where we are, and then to decide where we want to be at the end of the year. With only two and a half months to go in 2022, there isn’t much time. But time will pass whether we are productive with it or not. Let’s determine to not just be productive, but effective.

We all know that time is our most valuable resource. Time is the one resource that is finite. We may think that other resources are also finite, and they are, but not to the degree that time is. Take money for example. If we want or need more money and have time to do so, we can make more money. But not when there is no more time. Knowing this, we should guard and protect our time as the valuable resource that it is.

Many of my readers will recall my Three-Part-Process for Effectiveness. The main points of this are the three areas of Plan, Purge, and Perform. Perhaps a review is in order. Thinking of the end of 2022 as our focus, let’s use the Three-Part-Process for Effectiveness to structure our priorities.

Plan relates to identifying our priorities, and putting structure to them. Let’s use a simple example to best understand this. If my Plan includes being healthier at the end of 2022, I will want to be specific about what that means. One thing it can mean is exercising consistently. “Consistently” needs to have some structure. It might mean walking at least two miles a day five times a week. Healthier may also mean losing ten pounds, and maintaining that weight loss. It may also mean sleeping more and better, such as seven hours a night without interruption.

Purge refers to what we will eliminate. Using the “being healthier” plan, if we want to lose 10 pounds in two and a half months, we will need to reduce calories. We need to establish a number of calories consistent with our plan. We may also need to eliminate fried foods, sugar, and excess carbohydrates. You can add some specifics to this plan in the other areas mentioned, specifically exercise and sleep.

Perform is about operationalizing our plan. An example of Performing is “To consistently walk a minimum of five times a week at least two miles each time.” Another example is to establish a set time for going to bed and rising, consistent with being able to sleep at least seven hours a night. Performing related to our dietary changes may include becoming a Weight Watchers member and managing our weight within the identified parameters.

I chose “Being Healthier” as my plan to provide structure to the Three-Part-Process for Effectiveness for a reason related to this last quarter of the year. If we are healthy we are better able to manage the stress of this time of the year. Not only will we feel better, we will be able to accomplish more of what is important to us.

Being productive for productivity’s sake is not enough. We need to be effective, not just productive.

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The Great 100 Nurses

Whose heart have you touched lately with words of affirmation? Do you know whose life your actions and words have touched through the years? It is sometimes easier to remember the problems we have had in relationships, and not be aware of the blessings we have been a part of bestowing on others, and they on us. I have been blessed recently by the words and actions of two people in particular and have been touched beyond words by their kindness in sharing those with me and others at the Great 100 Nurses event held Saturday night, October 8, 2022, at the Greenville, NC Convention Center. My heart is so full I need to share this with you, and the lessons this has reaffirmed for me.

It is fine to be happy, but being compassionate and making a difference in the lives of others describes the Great 100 Nurses.

In the late 1980’s I was privileged to be a part of forming the NC Great 100 Nurses. At that time, I was VP of Nursing and Special Services at Rex Hospital. Heather Thorne, Director of the new cardiovascular service at Rex, brought the idea of forming the NC Great 100 Nurses to me, having experience with a similar organization in Louisiana. It was a wonderful idea, so of course, I put my full support behind it. I became the first chair of the steering committee. The inaugural event was in 1989 and the organization is still going strong this many years later.

My career focus changed in 1993 when I left Healthcare and started my own Speaking, Consulting, and Coaching business, The Fralix Group. Heather Thorne and I were both at the 25th anniversary of the NC Great 100 Nurses celebration. That was my last experience with the organization and the events until the most recent event on October 8th. 100 nurses were honored for 2022, as well as others who were selected during COVID and did not have the opportunity for their celebration. There were also nurses honored who were scholarship recipients. Congratulations are due to all of them, as well as to those who took the time to nominate them and to fill out the paperwork. Appreciation is also expressed to the volunteers who give many hours to keep this important organization strong.

Shirley Harkey, DHA, RN, FACHE, is an expert nurse who worked with me at Rex in the mid 80’s. Shirley was the manager of the Rex Pediatric unit. She left Rex in the late 80’s and has held VP and other positions at several NC hospitals and completed her doctorate. Shirley has kept in touch with me through the years, and I have enjoyed following her successful career. She has been a strong supporter of the Great 100 Nurses since its inception and was a recipient of the Great 100 Nurses award in 1989.

Shirley was asked to be the keynote speaker of the 2022 Great 100 Nurses event, and she honored me by asking me to share the platform with her. Shirley wanted to honor my involvement in the inception of the organization. She also honored the memory and involvement of other NC nurses who were instrumental in the organization’s inception.

The Great 100 Nurses event is a formal affair. There were over 600 people in attendance at the October 8th celebration. Shirley, my husband Mike, and I were seated at a table with Shirley’s daughter and her friend. There were two open seats, and two people, Janice Laurore and her husband Kevin, joined our table. Janice was the chair of the Publications Committee of the event. I did not think I knew them, but how wrong I was.

When I introduced myself to Janice and Kevin, Janice shared a story with me of her and my involvement in 1990 at Rex. She told me I am the reason for her long tenure at Rex hospital, giving me entirely too much credit for that. Janice told me a story about that, saying she had shared that same story with many others through the years. I was touched beyond words. I could not believe that my actions had such a positive impact on this then new nurse at Rex Hospital so much so that she not just remembers that but has told that story to others and now to me. What a gift Janice and her words were to me.

I am sharing Janice and her story and Shirley and her actions with my readers for one reason only, and it certainly is not to be boastful. I am not boastful about this. I am humbled by being able to be a positive influence on others. I am reminded of the importance of all our words and actions, and that we may never know how those words and actions impact others. And I am well aware was it not for the actions of Shirley Harkey inviting me to share her podium, by reaching out and honoring me, that I would likely never have known about Janice and her story.

What about the randomness of Janice and her husband Kevin sitting at our table at the event? Was it really random? I don’t think so. I prefer to think that God reached down and touched me, giving me the gift of reconnecting with Janice, of being able to have her words bless me. Also, I was given the gift of reconnecting with Shirley Harkey, of her honoring me as an important part of the inception of the NC Great 100 Nurses and inviting me to address the organization.   

Thank you Shirley and Janice who both have the gift of affirmation, and have reached down and touched me in perhaps the most positive and powerful manner that I have ever experienced. While I do not know if I deserve your gifts to me, I accept them as given to me with your whole hearts.

Now, I need to pay it forward. I am thinking of how to do that.

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Why Do I Spend Money Shopping?

I struggled with the title of this blog. One title I considered was, “Why Do I Shop?” I discarded that because why I shop and why I spend money shopping are two totally different things. I am going to assume you understand the difference. Another title I considered was, “Why do I spend money?” I decided that title did not fit because this is about spending money on stuff, not experiences or other things. I decided on the title, “Why do I spend money shopping?” This title best fits my focus, especially since I had several recent examples of spending money shopping and not being pleased with my purchases, including taking several purchases back in the past few days. The items I returned are good examples of the points I am trying to make about my spending, and the changes I want to make.

Those who have been with me for a few years will remember my year of no (really, very limited) spending, which was chronicled in a book, A Year in the Life of a Recovering Spendaholic. The year of limited/no spending was 2006, although the book was only published in 2017. It is available from Amazon, and I have some copies for sale as well. I would love for you to read it.

I had two most profound changes from my year of no/limited spending. First, I no longer wasted money on purchases. (Not true lately, but more about that later.) Second, I was no longer an impulsive spender. (Also not true lately, which I will explain further.)

Please note that the title of my book is “Recovering,” not “Recovered.” I am a Spendaholic and will always be. Although I am much better about what I buy and what I walk away from, I will always have a spending tendency. My problem is just like those who struggle with alcohol, eating disorders, and other addictions. The best way for me to control the problem is to be in control. When I am shopping, I sometimes forget, and buy things I do not need, or do not even want, and end up returning, wasting time and money by doing so. A recent example.

I went to Belk a few days ago and saw a few things that were on sale. Sales are one of my problems. I left Belk with (another) throw, a set of pillowcases, and 2 sink mats. I used one of the sink mats and decided that they are not the right size. But since I had already used one, I could only return one. I liked the throw but decided that I already have plenty of throws. There were no matching sheets for the pillowcases, and I know that I will not be happy with mismatched bed linens, so I decided to return the pillowcases, although they are great quality and only $7.00 on sale.

While in my closet tonight, my eyes fell upon a recent purchase, a sterling ring holder. I bought it a couple of months ago and love the way it looks, but I find that I am not using it. The ring holder part is not tall enough to hold much, so I have reverted to using my crystal ring holder which is much more practical. While it really wasn’t an impulsive purchase, I let my need for beauty, (not want, but need; I have a need for beauty, and I love sterling) override my practical side. Had I only paid attention to its size, I would have known the sterling ring holder would not work for me.

Back to the two changes from my year of no spending, not wasting money, and not being impulsive. While those changes stuck for a while, eventually I slipped back into some old habits. Not in total, but more than is good for me. I still wait until I get home if I want some tea, and do not have any with me, instead of stopping and spending money on tea that will not be as good as mine. That is an example of not wasting money, But I do waste money when I buy something that doesn’t fit, or work for me, such as the dish drain and sterling ring holder. I am being impulsive when I buy another throw when I have plenty, even when I love the one that is on sale. I am being impulsive when I buy a white jean jacket for one of my granddaughters, not knowing if she will like it, even when it is 50% off and is a very good price. It can’t be returned, and she doesn’t like it.

Being in control includes not buying something because it is on sale, regardless of how good of a price it is, especially when I do not need it.

Being in control includes living within a budget, something I have never done. Is it too late for me to do so at soon to be seventy-one years of age?

Have you heard, there is another Prime Day coming?! It is scheduled for October 11-12, 2022. Regardless, convince yourself that if you didn’t need it before Prime Day, you do not need to buy it. You may rationalize that spending money on Christmas gifts during Prime day is really saving money, not spending money. Maybe so if you plan to buy something that is less expensive on Prime Day. But not if you forget you have it or buy more because you forget what you have already bought for Christmas. This can be tricky. Just be careful.

Why Do You Spend Money Shopping? A good question to ask yourself before getting caught up in the frenzy of holiday shopping.

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