I’m saying no.

A few weeks ago I was in Banana Republic purchasing a shirt. I’m on my third rotation of using Project 333 and, I will admit, this time around it hasn’t been very fun. After the first two rotations I was feeling great. I loved my wardrobe and was really getting comfortable with using less clothing on a regular basis. My outfits ranged from basic to fun and colorful. This time around there are gaps and they have been challenging. Too many mixes of colors and not enough warm clothing that go together. Hence, I went shopping and found a long sleeve navy shirt that was perfect. I was at the counter ready to purchase my one item and the friendly salesman said, “Would you like to save $10 today? You just have to give us some information. Takes less than 5 minutes.” When I looked at him with pause in my eyes he added, “It’s not a credit card!”

I kindly said, “No thank you,” and he looked at me like I had just turned down free money. Wait. I had just turned down free money. They were going to give me $10 for signing up for a program which then, in turn, would send me all the latest promotions and deals and give me a discount every time I shopped. This in turn would fill up my inbox, my text messages, and my valuable time with enticements of all the latest fashions I’m missing out on. As a result, I will feel inadequate and thus, come crawling back for more clothing and in the end spend more money. Sound dramatic? Yes, it is but it happens. It happens all the time. And I am no exception.

At first glance, $10 is very appealing. Yes, I would like $10. But at what cost? I’ve spent a lot of time trying to clear my life of extraneous details that bog me down. One of the biggest areas I’ve found that has lead to more free time is clicking the unsubscribe button. Did you know it has a snowball effect? Once you start doing it not only do you receive less adds and coupons (that, by the way, I spent more time thinking about using than actually using) but your information doesn’t get sold off as frequently and uninvited guests tend to stay at bay. I estimate that I used to delete about 20 coupons and adds from my inbox in a day. Now it’s about 3 a day. Then add on the fact that if I don’t constantly see what I’m missing out on I feel more satisfied with my wardrobe.

This year I’m saying no to every promotion that requires me to sign on a line or give away my information. If I happen to hit a store that is having a great sale then I’ll call myself lucky. But no longer will I spend my time following sales, coupons, and promotions.

Instead, you can find me here or reading on my couch.

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