I have never really been into brand names….really. I don’t know what it is – perhaps it was because of my upbringing or having siblings and parents who weren’t brand savvy or maybe it was because I was taught to be practical with purchases, but I just never thought to spend on luxury items for myself. Nevertheless, on my 40th birthday as, my girlfriends reached under the table as we were finishing dinner at a very rare (at least for me!) girls night out, I recognized the bag – the stripes, the golden embossed lettering … and WOW, I was excited. Something of value for me. The “oh too proactical, kids and husband first gal, stuck in “mom mode” was getting a “Coach” purse. And I was actually very excited.
I don’t like putting too much value on material things. It is not my style. The words that came from my girlfriends’ mouths, however led me to some interesting discoveries about me and some VALUABLE lessons to come.
“We don’t want to see any baby bottles, sippy cups or diapers, in that purse!”, they laughed.
For the next couple of days I was the butt of a lot of jokes at home as I showed people my new “Coach” purse, all the while returning it to the box every time I showed it off. I wasn’t ready for the transition yet. I had to clear out all the receipts from my old bag. I needed to clean out my wallet, organize my belongings. I couldn’t just throw things into that purse. I had to …ummm treat it with respect.
And so the lessons began….
On treating myself with respect
Truth be told, it was just a bag but the perceived value had me treating it well and really watching what I put into it and where I left it. I kept it organized and in the long run it saved me time, made me feel better, less cluttered, more focused. It was kind of like when your desk is clean and you are so much more productive… you know the
Why do people often fail to do this with their own lives, with respect to taking time for themselves, exercising, the food they put in their bodies, putting everything and everyone before themselves and often not treating themselves as people of value? Why do solopreneurs often fail to say no to the needs of others and put their business needs and to do lists on hold..our dreams on hold. Are they not valuable too?
After a while I got busy again. That purse often landed by the door as I entered the house. I started to stuff receipts, the brochures I was handed and appointment cards into the purse. It became cluttered again. I was slipping. The “just this once” logic” was kicking in.
People do this often with a number of things, their diets, their business goals, their inability to say “no”. Umm, their “New Year’s Resolutions”! Slipping does not mean
falling – we just need to nip it in the bud before the bad habit kicks in again. . I remembered how I felt when I kept it clean and uncluttered. I was more productive. I was organized. When creating new habits, we need to remind ourselves why we set the goal, what feeling was evoked when we were on track before we get totally off track.
On appreciating what I have
Why was this purse any different than my own handbag. Truth is, for God to entrust me with more, I think we should always show that we are appreciative of all that we have and treat it with gratitude and respect. We are entrusted with our bodies, our lives, our finances, our talents, our dreams. It was up to us not to squander them and to be responsible and grateful for them. And I was grateful for the friends who made time to take me out for the night and showed me that I mattered. That meant more to me than the purse. I matter. YOU matter. I was valuable, coach purse or not.
To your success,