Day 14: Last night I set my alarm for 6:30am. I needed to get an early start on some work before a meeting I was facilitating. Rushed all morning and ended up being 5 minutes late to the meeting. No one said they were bothered by my tardiness, but I felt it. I was annoyed with myself. While normally late for personal functions, I try desperately to never be late for my meetings because it sets a bad precedent. All this scrambling prevented me entirely from looking at any personal mails before work.
Yvo is back from vacation and just started reading about my trials and tribulations with 40 days. For many years now she’s been once of my closest friends and confidants. Our chat today inspired this post. The conversation went as the following:
Yvo: I like reading about your non-shopping adventures.
Yvo: And am gaining into insight into just how much you online shop lol.
Me: Haha. People are like ‘Um, I had no idea. You’re crazy’.
Me: What are non-shopping adventures?
Yvo: Just how much you think through purchasing things lol.
Yvo: And how it sounds like if you buy this one thing your life will become amazing.
Me: Because it is. It’s like, I love you so much [insert purchasable noun here], every day is a stupid laugh.
Note: Reference day 10 for “stupid laugh” definition.
About 2 months ago at my local Nordstrom Rack I went to try on a handful of items in the fitting room. When I walk into the room, I noticed the addition of these two labels that accompany nice long hooks.
There was also either a 3rd and 4th unlabeled hook or a bar (I can’t remember specifically). When I saw these my mind did a happy dance. Someone in Nordstrom corporate has internalized what I do in a fitting room into a process and has optimized it for the upsell. Kudos to the anonymous genius at Nordies, you’re awesome.
My fitting room process is this:
- Carry as many items as you can manage to the fitting room.
- Sort items by desire levels in case they have a limit that you can bring into the room.
- Pick items to the limit number then take those in for a wave of trying on activities.
- When in the fitting room, put items on an initial hook.
- Try on items from initial hook, and decide how you feel and move item onto 3 other hooks based on Love, Not Sure, No. (Any retail store can’t put a negative purchase label on a hook because that wouldn’t help them meet their end goal of selling things.)
Anything on the ”umm… not sure” pile gets a second attempt try on. (Things that land in the umm pile are usually out of price range for the day or because it’s not really my style, but still flattering.)
- Move items after second try onto either the “love” or “no” pile.
- Inspect “love” items for irregularities, snags, discoloration, etc.
- Repeat steps 2-8 depending on how many batches you ended up needing to do because of the limit.
- Carry out “love” pile on left arm and “no” pile on right arm to give back to the fitting room attendant.
Digression: Since I worked at Gap retail for a year when I was a teen, I do not leave the fitting room in a hot mess for the attendant to clean up. A customer service position is already difficult, I don’t need to make their job any harder.
During my chat with Yvo, her last statement reminded me of these hooks at Nordstrom Rack. It’s not that I believe an item will help make my life become amazing, or I need this thing to feel better about myself. As cliché as it sounds “love at first sight” is probably the best way to describe this feeling.
It’s a surge of emotions. A flutter. Kismet. An unexpected discovery. An aspiration of what it could be, or mean as part of my life. This feeling does make my life amazing. When I see it, the initial memory of acquisition rushes back and I’m reminded of the very first thought that was, “I love you so much. Won’t you come home with me?”
This love makes it difficult for me to let go of things, because I have relationships with my things. The item reminds me of:
- The person I was.
- How it fit in my life.
- The thoughts of how happy I was the first time I laid eyes on it.
- A history that becomes associated to that item through use and/or wear.
Letting my inner geek girl show: It’s not just a thing, but a container of emotional metadata that only I can see. More plainly, it’s a stupid laugh, time and time again.
I fall in love with things everyday. Is that really so bad?