Inspired Shopping at Christmas

Yesterday I went on an Inspired Shopping jaunt, not expecting too much. I did have a list -- a small Christmas present for my mum, a small present for my sister Eleanor (I've bought their main presents but felt something more was needed), and my own Kris Kringle, to be given to me by another sister, Simone. I went to Chadstone, a large shopping mall that I live close to.

Despite my list, I was open to other possibilities. As an inspired shopper I keep what I call a priority list of all my shopping wants and needs -- it works like a set of affirmations. So I knew if I found something on the priority list, apart from my immediate shopping list, I'd be open to buying it.

I was tired, and decided to use my visit as a kind of Inspired Shopping experiment. In my book I advise people to check into how they're feeling before they head for a spot of leisure shopping. I felt I needed to go despite my fatigue, but I was aware that I probably wouldn't have the most efficient and fun shopping experience of my life.

In the end it all worked out really well. I kept on finding small 'presents' for myself, and felt guilty about this. But the funny thing was, the 'presents' ended up coming to $30, which was exactly the amount my sister was going to spend on me for the family Kris Kringle! I had really given up on having this present worked out, because I had decided I would source a shopping trolley for about $30 and tell my sister where she could buy it for me -- and I couldn't for the life of me find a suitable shopping trolley, let alone one at the price I wanted.

In the end I found myself with 3 bargains -- a great, colour book on Zen meditation for $10; a double CD of Leonard Cohen hits for $10; and a double Miles Davis CD for $10. I'd succeeded in finding my Kris Kringle without really trying. And in the process, I'd found a great supplementary present for my mother, at the same place I found the two CD bargains: a new edition of Vivaldi's Four Seasons with an attractive cover. Lastly, I narrowed the present I'm buying my friend to two or three possibilities.

What was wonderful about this was that I hadn't tried too hard. If I go out thinking that I've got to have a great Inspired Shopping experience, it's more difficult for the process to work. Instead I let go, allowing myself to be fatigued and knowing that I might well arrive home with nothing. I also came to a conclusion about my tiredness: I wasn't feeling irritated, despite the fact that the place was full of frenzied Christmas shoppers -- if I'd been feeling both tired and irritated, I might have cut the visit short.

I still have to buy a small present for my sister, as well as decide on a present for my friend -- as an inspired shopper, I try not to put pressure on myself to get everything done in the one trip. Another successful bout of Inspired Shopping, and I learned something about myself at the same time!

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