New Outfit Post: In which I rationalize my shopping addiction

I have done many, many things to attempt to reduce stress. I spent years in yoga, twisting and contorting my body into unnatural forms and attempting to conquer positions called One Leg King Pigeon (yes, really.) I rode horses, desperately clinging to their backs like a spider monkey scampering up a swaying tree in a rainstorm. For a while, I attempted to teach myself to meditate, counting my breaths while trying to block out all those nagging worries like did I remember to sign my kid's homework binders and those checks really need to be deposited at the bank and I have got to remember to pay the gas bill and gosh, gas is getting so damm expensive and soon I'm going to be forced to ride my bike everywhere and by the way where the hell is my bike?

However, there's really only one thing that helps to reduce stress. And that's shopping. Oh, glorious shopping! As soon as I enter a store a wave of calm washes over me. I inhale the intoxicating scent of suede and leather and exotic perfumes and instantly feel my body relax. All those little stressful thoughts and fears fade away, overcome by the dizzying visual stimuli of leather wedges and printed maxi skirts and softly faded jeans. It's delightful, and mystifying, and never fails to elevate my mood. I wander down the aisles, meticulously examining new merchandise. I spend hours trying on shoes. Sometimes I take a few friends along, and we whittle away an afternoon hunting down the perfect pair of ballet flats. Shopping never fails to bring me out of whatever funk I was in before entering a store.

And, according to a study just out of Taiwan, shopping can actually be good for you. Scientists reported in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health that shopping may provide companionship, exercise, and an opportunity to maintain a healthy diet, and concluded that men and women who shop daily may live longer than those who avoid retail therapy.

In the study, researchers led by Dr Yu-Hung Chang of the Institute of Population Health Sciences, Taiwan, studied nearly 2,000 men and women aged 65 and over who lived in their own homes. They found those who shopped regularly lived longer than those who shopped just once a week or less, even after adjusting for factors such as physical limitations and cognitive decline. Those who shopped daily were 27% less likely to die than those who shopped infrequently, with the biggest effect seen in men

"Shopping is often for pleasure, with the potential to increase psychological well-being," they conclude. "Compared to other types of leisure-time physical activity, like formal exercise, which usually requires motivation and sometimes professional instruction, shopping is easier to undertake and maintain."

These finding make perfect sense. Shopping is physical and forces you to be active, though in a much more light-hearted manner than pounding away on a treadmill. It also forces you to be social - I've befriended many a salesgirl when in need of advice regarding a particular garment, and bonded with my friends.

Do you believe shopping is a good form of socialization and exercise? Do you find shopping exhilarating, or is the entire experience excruciating for you? Are you surprised at this study's findings? Discuss!

(As a little celebration for reaching 150 followers this week, I'm having a giveaway to one of my favorite vintage stores this week! This shop is a favorite of Jane Aldridge of Sea of Shoes, and is filled with pristine vintage from Christian Dior, Betsey Johnson, Prada, and Halston. Be sure to stop by and enter - its going to be fabulous.)


Thrifted Fossil dress; Nordstrom Rack necklace; Old Navy leather wedges; Marc Jacobs bag (from a consignment shop!); Betsey Johnson watch; eBay gold turquoise bracelet






15 comments:

  1. YES...I DO IT FOR EXERCISE...please tell my husband that! Sounds good anyway! I will go a step further, and say for some of us, shopping develops our creativity and artistic bent...go ahead, anyone can use that excuse as well...its on me!

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  2. Congrats on reaching 150 followers! I look forward to seeing what your vintage giveaway will be.

    xo L.

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  3. You are speaking my language! Shopping is such a stress reliever for me. Even it's furniture shopping, random stuff shopping at Target, or clothes shopping, it always relaxes me. It definitely a workout too- carrying the bags, walking, taking clothes on and off, etc. All in all, it's pretty much awesome!

    PS- Those shoes are to die for! Wedges are my absolute favorite shoes.

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  4. Great outfit -- you find the best thrifted items! Do you ever garage sale search for stuff at all? And okay, so science is saying that if we show we'll live longer? Will have to show the post to the BF soon! :D

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  5. I love this dress, the muted colors make this such a good summer plaid! I'm sort of addicted to Fossil, their stuff is such great quality for the price.

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  6. Just had to say that I enjoyed your post today and OMG I LURV your dress!

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  7. That dress is brilliant beyond all sense. You look amazing in it!

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  8. You look so cute in that dress!! <3

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  9. You look so sweet in that dress and I love the shoes!

    I'm inclined to agree to a point. I don't think that bathing suit or jean shopping is relaxing for me. But if I'm just shopping for the sake of having something to do, AND I actually have money to spend, then yes. :)

    Come take a look inside A Working Mom's Closet

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  10. You look absolutely adorable!

    -Hannah

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  11. I love plaid dresses, yours is adorable! I'm definitely a huge shopper but only shop vintage/secondhand/thrifted to lessen my impact on the environment, to save money and to contribute money to charity. It's also always a treasure hunt to shop this way, I never know what I'll find and a majority of the time the pieces are unique or unusual.

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  12. Really good outfit for you. It is really suitable to you and your shopping addiction. You would be feel very comfortable in this cloth.

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  13. I absolutely find shopping to be good exercise! It's actually about the only exercise I get. I've also found it's great for building relationships with other women...not that it's superficial, but it keeps our hands busy while we talk (even if we walk out empty-handed). Based on this research, I think I'm just going to keep doing what I'm doing!

    And I think my mom is actually a great example of this. Shopping (and cleaning the house) has been her main (only) forms of exercise for the past 30 years or so, and she is in perfect health and looks about 10 years younger than she actually is. (oh, and she's not as 50s housewives as she sounds--she's worked desk jobs my whole life.)

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  14. I wouldn't go as far as calling it exercise, but it is my #1 fave leisure activity these days. Thrifting, specifically. I just love digging for treasure!!

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  15. I think it is completely awful. How is it preserving collectav=ble clothing to cut it up and turn it into something else?

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