Being Seen – Really Seen – For Who You Are

Posted by Jill Chivers in Shopping, Clothes and Emotions

A core human need is to be seen for who we really, and fully, are. Many of us have personal habits, idiosyncrasies and quirks that we’re not sure others will find endearing, or even acceptable. And so we hide them.

We compartmentalise ourselves, keeping the less than desirable parts of ourselves hidden from view. Our thinking follows this logic: if people close to me, or even those in a ballpark vicinity, knew who I really am, they wouldn’t like me so much. So, best I not show them all that I am.

woman hiding face with hands

This shows up a lot with people who have developed unhealthy shopping habits. If you have a problem with shopping – either it’s become compulsive so you don’t have a handle on it anymore, or it feels like an addiction, where you feel you have to indulge it on a regular basis, you might start to feel that you have to hide your habits from those around you.

What you start hiding from those around you is the volume of shopping that you’re doing (how much you are really buying), the frequency with which you are shopping, the amount that you are spending, and how much shopping means to you.

If this is you, you might start to notice that you’re telling your partner or friends that “yes I went shopping“, but you’re not telling them how much you bought. You show them a portion of your haul, but not the full scale of it. You mention that you shop on the weekends, but you don’t tell them it’s all day Saturday and then again Sunday. And again on the Internet on week nights.

Quotation-MarksWhen you hide parts of yourself from important people around you, you start to lose part of yourself. You’re not whole anymore.


You’ve become a series of fragments, with pieces of you here, and other pieces there.  Keeping track of all those pieces becomes hard work. The energy involved in keeping the scale of your problem a secret starts to exact a heavy price.

Now I’m not saying you need to give full disclosure about yourself to everyone you meet. I agree that a bit of mystery is a fine quality for a woman to foster. I’m not talking about discretion or appropriate degrees of privacy.  Not at all.

I’m talking about wholeness.  I’m talking about being fully and wholly yourself, and allowing others to see you for who you really, and fully, are.

zen stones

Wholeness is one of the marks of psychological health – it’s something that our very spirit yearns for.  To be seen for who we really are, and not have to hide important aspects of ourselves from others.

If you have been hiding aspects of your shopping habits from important people in your life, now is the time to address that.  When will there ever be a better time?  The first step is personal awareness – acknowledgement to yourself that you are keeping something important from those around you.

The next step is some form of discussion with those around you about your issue.  Maybe it’s a “big conversation”, maybe it’s not so dramatic.  It really depends on your personal circumstances, intentions and desires.  After that comes action – doing something about a habit that has become unmanageable.  That’s where we can help.

Women who are doing our Year Without Clothes Shopping program often state how freeing it is to talk openly about their habits, their compulsions, their desires about shopping.  How liberating it is to not have to hide.  And how soothing it is not to be judged.

woman holding journal

You can see some of what our members have to say on the Success Stories page.  And when you join, you’ll be part of the ongoing alive conversations that happen on our Members Only bulletin boards.  Those conversations are some of the most honest and rich conversations I’ve ever been priviledged to be part of.

Here at My Year Without Clothes Shopping we don’t judge.

We listen.  We support.  We encourage.  We challenge.  We’re here.

We’d love to have you join us and journey back to a healthier relationship to shopping.  If you’d like to start easy with our 6 Week Conscious Shopping Mini course, please do that.  Or jump right into to our full-12 month program.  Either way, we’re waiting to welcome you.


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