Good Shopping Karma

The best shopping karma of all: friends at my 2006 book signing at Davis Kidd

The best shopping karma of all: friends at my 2006 book signing at Davis Kidd

I went back into my archives and found this bit of wisdom. I always say that I have “good shopping karma” because I have always been able to find bargains and manifest just what I wanted or needed. I’m doing less shopping now because I’m working on applying my “good shopping karma” skills to creating a more sustainable life and career. Maybe some of these tips will inspire "good shopping karma" for you, too. 

Here are some of my “good shopping karma” rules: 
• Get to know the lay of the land. Cruise the entire store, not just one department, and perhaps other stores in the mall and big box stores. 
• Educate yourself so you’ll know a good value when you see one. Remember that experience is education, too. 
• Then watch the prices, look at the merchandise, keep an eye on what moves and what doesn’t move. 
• Have an idea of what you want, but also be open to surprises and different options. 
• Remember that the big box stores brag about their bargains, but often the full price department stores have better markdowns and take better care of their merchandise. 
• Full price stores have better bathrooms, too—and details like that count! Shopping in a classier atmosphere is easier on the nerves, so you can concentrate on finding a quality product instead of sifting through inferior leftovers. Comfort and atmosphere are really important. You can’t think straight when you need to go to the bathroom. 
• If you do go “junking” (Goodwill, cut rate stores, etc.) be mentally prepared for it. It takes a different mentality to sift through castoffs than to buy new. Bargain basements can be great—but like big box stores, highly overrated. 
• You save more by buying one first class item that suits you perfectly than buying several second class items just because they’re “cheap.” Cheap is usually not a bargain—unless you are an experienced shopper with good instincts. Look for value. 
• Bide your time and don’t be misled by early sales prices. 
• Hold off till the right deal comes, and the right outfit appears on your radar. 
• Don’t buy something you plan to diet into—it will hang in your closet forever. 
• If you feel tired or anxious or indifferent, don’t buy, because you’ll regret it. Go home and take a nap. 
• When the right price and product and timing come together, grab it. You’ll feel a rush of positive energy, the clothes will look good to you even in the fitting room mirror (where clothes always seem to look the worst). And it will feel right, as if you’re in the flow. 
• When the flow is happening, ride the wave and shop. When good shopping karma kicks in, enjoy it while it lasts. When it’s not happening or the energy lets down, go do something else. The wave has washed onto the beach, and the window of opportunity is gone. Another wave will come again when the weather is right. 
• Approach all shopping as a game, not a chore. If you’re playing a game, it’s okay to take risks and make mistakes and play. If it’s a chore, all you want to do is get it over with. Which means you’ll be too tired and cranky, so you’ll settle for something just to get the job done and get out of the store.
• Remember that even the big stuff is really small stuff in the cosmic scheme of things. Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “There is no great or small to the One who knoweth all.” 
• When in doubt, ask for guidance and listen to your intuition.
• If you can’t get the deal you want, be willing to walk away. There will always be another day to shop.

Finally, whether it is shopping in stores or shopping for information on the Internet, know when it is time to stop shopping and to start working on your dreams. Shopping (or surfing the Net) can be a distraction. Walk out of the store, turn your computer off, and go take one baby step toward the fulfillment of your dreams. Be proactive on your own behalf and create something that someone else will want to buy or enjoy. 

Publishing resources: 

I have found some new resources for those of you who are writers and considering e-book self-publishing. 

The Book Doula
A doula (pronounced doo-luh) is an experienced professional who offers ongoing practical and emotional support to someone before, during, and after a birth. Dr. Liz Alexander offers her clients the same exemplary service as they conceive, grow, and birth their brainchild—a GOOD nonfiction book they can use to showcase their subject-matter expertise, boost business revenues, and future-proof their careers. She has a great blog and website that offers great insights on creating the book of your dreams. 
She says, “Don’t write the book for where you are. Write the book for where you want to be.” 

The Book Designer
A great website and blog that offers help for publishers and authors who want to publish their own books and get to market with a great looking, properly constructed book, on time and on budget. The blog is written by Joel Friedlander, proprietor of Marin Bookworks in San Rafael, California. I check his blog on a regular basis.

Write It Forward
Bob Mayer is a NY Times Best-Selling multi-published author. This blog offers insight from a pro author who is now entering the e-book self-publishing world. Great entries that offer insight on the changes and challenges the publishing industry is going through right now.

Publishing Perspectives
A great site for emerging trends in the book industry, especially the cutting edge changes and the e-book industry.

Additional blogs I check daily include:
The “poster boy” for indie and e-book publishing
Mike Shatzkin’s take on the book industry and e-books from a cutting edge industry viewpoint.