Life,  Personal

The real price of happiness

I have followed The Minimalists on Twitter for years and a minimalistic way of life has always been something I was interested in but never properly looked into it or paid it enough attention so why am I suddenly taking it so seriously? Let me tell you why.

No it’s not because I want to sell all my stuff and travel the world with one suitcase, I also don’t want to move into a tiny house and live with the bare minimum (major respect to anyone who does either of the above) but because I have always been very aware of my attachment to material possessions, my addiction to shopping and my never-ending search for happiness in material things but the past two weeks I realised just how bad it was.

Much like The Minimalists, Joshua and Ryan, I grew up poor and that put me on a determined path to work my ass off for all of the things that I want. I never wanted to go without ever again. I never wanted to want something really badly but not be able to get it and this began my obsession with buying and having.

The problem with this is that I thought I could buy happiness. And as I am typing this I realise that I actually didn’t even need to watch the documentary to know that happiness can’t be bought because even though we were poor I wasn’t an unhappy child. My best memories from my childhood don’t involve things.

Anyway, back to what I was saying, I felt like the answer to happiness was to have it all – and not in the good husband, the amazing mother, the best friends, type of way, but the nice house, the walk in closet, the cool car kind of way. And I always thought that this came from the fact that I may have always felt a bit “deprived” because I didn’t have much growing up but now I know that it is just a search for happiness.

I wasn’t brought up to be materialistic and I was happy even though I didn’t have it all, but since my life became revolved around materialism I am unhappy.

So the real reason I watched the documentary is because as some of you will know, we bought a car recently and it was super exciting and I am so glad that we are finally driving around in something that we don’t feel is going to break down any second but something was constantly in the back of my mind. I was worried. A car is expensive and it is going to be a big adjustment going from not paying a car instalment to paying one so I was scared. But I was also sad that I wouldn’t be able to go out and shop like I used to. The car was a necessity because our old one had completely given up on us and there I was feeling a bit sad because I wouldn’t be able to buy luxuries.

Payday arrived and there were sales everywhere and I just wanted to shop but I had to control myself and again, this made me sad. It was at this point that I realised the true extent of it all. How the rush of shopping made me happy for a short while and then I would have to do it again. How I have a lot of clothes but still want more and more and more.

I watched the documentary hoping for an aha moment and I had several but I think I just had the biggest aha moment while writing this post and my mind is pretty much blown because it’s almost as if I just had a therapy session with myself. This is the reason I write!

I was putting a price tag on happiness and it was getting me nowhere so I am going to try the alternative and take the price tag off it and see what happens.

Also, the documentary is really worth a watch. I might do a follow up post with some things I learnt – it was meant to be this post but as you can see this post was basically a conversation with myself so thanks for eavesdropping.


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I speak my truth. ?Body positivity ❤️Self love ?Budget plus size fashion ? Real life ? Fashion Merchandiser 9-5. Wannabe helper of women 2


  • Lizna

    I know exactly what you mean. I’m an emotional shopper and when I feel bad I want new things or yummy take out food. But the happiness and joy only lasts in that moment. I am very proud of myself that even tho I don’t really have the funds, but also the shops being so far away now that I’ve been able to find other things to lift me up. Also some advice you gave me the other day when I was down was to go for a walk. Now when I need that happiness injection I play tug of war with the dogs!

    • Kerry Heathfield-Sharper

      That is exactly how I am, but it’s not only when I am emotional. It’s all the time. It’s almost like shopping is a high for me. I am working on finding other things to lift me up like writing and reading, all the simple things.
      And thank you for reminding me of my own advice 🙂 I am going to do this.
      Dogs are an instant mood changer – they really bring so much happiness.

  • lydia

    I love this. I feel the same about shopping. There is a joy in being able to have something you want but the joy of knowing and understanding that you don’t need it is far greater.

    • Kerry Heathfield-Sharper

      You are too wise! I love that and I am going to remember it as I start my new pursuit of happiness xx

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