Stop "saving it for best"

by Amanda Fleet

I know... I should talk... I have a cupboard FULL of notebooks that are somehow too good to use. I suspect I've inherited this characteristic from my Mum, who STILL has a bottle of Chanel No. 5 in a drawer that I bought her for a birthday maybe 20 years ago, and which she is still "keeping for best". It's her favourite perfume, but the idea of her wearing it every day was a concept too far for her. The whole point of me buying it was so that "every day could be a best day". And now it possibly smells like cat wee.

I have a cupboard full of notebooks. Some I've been sent by Nero to review or assess for potentially stocking in the shop. Many I've bought myself. The vast majority of them are glorious things, with beautiful covers and/or sublime paper. Only a fraction of them have been used for more than an ink-pen test. Yet, I'm a writer. I write. A lot. But when a new idea starts wriggling in my brain, instead of reaching for one of the beautiful books I have, I rummage through the stack to find the least-good one, "just in case the book ideas don't pan out".

How mad is that? It's like the book is somehow better than I am, and I shouldn't sully it's pages with random ideas that go nowhere. (I'm sure a psychologist would have a field-day with that!).

Likewise, I have a wardrobe full of beautiful clothes, that are also somehow being "saved for best" and a yarn-stash full of wool that's too nice to use.

No one lives forever. I certainly won't. I'm already the other side of 50 so the chances are high that I have less to go than I've already had. It really is time to break the habit of a lifetime and start using the good notebooks, the nice ink, the posh pencils; to wear the good clothes and knit the expensive yarn.

Life feels grim at times. Let's all use the nice stuff we have (whether that's stationery or clothes or anything else) and make all days feel like "best days"?