Many of us LOVE to shop and we all have our vices that we like to indulge in, and some of these indulgences cost us a pretty penny! Maybe for some of us, we don't necessarily drop a lot of money on one thing, but we have our habits (daily, or weekly) that add up to a costly expense over time. This expense transitions from the mere money we spend, into the expense of the repercussions we reap thereafter. We make excuses to justify why it's ok and why we deserve to treat ourselves to these luxuries. There is no harm in pampering yourself, or treating yourself to whatever you desire, as long as you are not treating yourself momentarily to a future of REGRET.
In light of our struggling economy, it's hard to keep things in the proper perspective. All the wisdom tells us that we need to cut back and save money, however we also know that our economy will not benefit if we are all keeping the cash in our wallets instead of continuing to filter it into the economy. Just imagine what would happen if everyone took their money and put it in the bank or under their mattress, and only bought enough food to sustain a heartbeat? Can you see the whole picture?
There is a new trendy word that is popping up more and more these days: SHIFT. Beyond our control, we are all experiencing this shift and some people are wholeheartedly embracing it and realizing the necessity for it, and others are resisting it and criticizing all that it represents. Well, I honestly feel bad for the stubborn folks out there who believe if they protest against the SHIFT that they will somehow stop it from happening.
Though you have no control over the fact that this SHIFT is occurring and will continue with or without your approval, you do have control over how you will live and make your choices. It can be a simple and enjoyable re-balancing if you just look at your life in an honest way.
If you turn on the radio and the tv and just listen and watch, all the advertisers are still pressing ahead to stay afloat and keep you interested in what they have to offer. There are so called bargains on every street corner to lure in the masses. Suddenly it's very fashionable to wear cheap clothes, and the biggest campaign (since we all have to eat) is to lure people to stretch their dollar for a meal! The bigger picture (pictures speak a 1000 words!) is that in these sad times, people still love to go out, socialize, and eating tends to enhance moods (for the moment).....
I know that all of us are bearing the brunt of these difficult times, and we all have to adjust ourselves accordingly. I urge you to consider though that jumping all over bargain clothes, and cheap bargain meals in establishments that are serving not so healthy cuisine is not money well spent. Honestly, there is no such thing as good quality cheap food. Sorry to say.
I saw a program (a few programs) that gave the true nitty gritty on what is in the food, the caloric breakdown, sodium, fat, etc., and it was TRULY SCARY!!!! FRIGHTENING!!! I shall not name names, but you can best believe that MOST of the food chains, from fast food joints to restaurants that you can find in almost any neighbor, are serving up foods that may look tasty but they are lethal in disguise. One such place has a section on their menu that claims to be "healthy selections," and so how can a so-called healthy turkey burger with avocado, lettuce, tomato, cheese, fries, be over 1500 calories with over 150 grams of fat? For some people on diets, that 1500 calories is supposed to be their full day's intake, but certainly NOT the fat!
I truly get it about how yummy fast food can be every now and then, but in moderation! Commercials are all over telling people that because we are in economic turmoil, you can take your $10.00 and come into their establishment and get a great BIG FAT meal. I am sorry to say, spending your $10.00 on a meal that packs enough fat for 3 days worth of eating is not a good deal. In fact, it's an investment in future weight gain, possible heart issues, and long term feelings of sadness and perhaps depression. You have to consider that in the moment, it is in fact a lovely feeling, your taste buds are doing the "happy dance," but in the long run, you are on the path to PROLONGED unhappiness. Many know the feeling... the happiness you possessed at the table suddenly becomes a distant memory, as the GUILT now takes over and lives in your mind and body past your bedtime, onto the next days, weeks, months, years...
I say "Buyer Beware," because as much as we want to live, spend money, support businesses, you want to know that YOU will benefit from your choices in life. It's your money that you worked hard for, so IF you don't want to stay home and prepare something healthy (knowing what you put into it), make certain to ask for adjustments to be made to your food when you eat out. YOU are allowed to do this. Some people are afraid to speak up when they dine out and no one should ever feel afraid to ask for what they want, especially if it's what they truly NEED. It's your money!
Shift your mind! You work hard for a reason. Shift for your benefit!