What's in my handbag? I found myself wondering while its weight on my shoulder was pulling me down. I didn't even bring my laptop, so what could it be? I became curious. I took a peek into my handbag only to see my large purse, my charger, some tissues, too many pens, a notebook and some make up I rarely use. Hmm why did I bring that. I have never questioned using a handbag, it's convenient after all. But that ache in my shoulder and the realization that there was nothing really useful in my bag left me wondering: Is it always necessary to wear a handbag?
Determined to identify and eliminate the culprit that was weighing my bag down, I started the inspection. It didn't take me long to admit defeat. I had to acknowledge that I was accumulating stuff that is just not necessary to have with me all the time.
But where would I put my oversized purse if I ditched my bag? I do need money and ID after all. The inadequate size of most of my pockets isn’t really helpful. (Who in their right mind invented fake pockets?! And why are brands still attaching them?).
I started checking the Internet if it was only me who thought women always wearing handbags, oversized purses and having too small pocket sizes is fundamentally wrong. Maybe there was a secret club of women against pocket and purse discrimination I could join. I found that there was surprisingly little outrage. So I went out to ditch my purse in exchange for a wallet to try leaving my handbag home when I go out. Because who knows maybe I do need a bag after all?
I walked into the next best luggage store in Vienna, to ask if they had a really small wallet that fits into a pocket. The clerk asked me whether I meant a “men’s wallet”. I held my breath for a few seconds avoiding that flare of anger over the word choice, then I had to smirk; how ironic I thought. So I chose a neat tiny “men’s wallet” and went on to migrate my stuff from my purse. Which (unsurprisingly) was also filled with too many things I did not need (but who knows maybe that coffee card I never use will eventually get me that free coffee if I just carry it around for a few more years?).
It's been six weeks now and I still don't use my handbag when I go for lunch with colleagues, or do other things where I don't need to bring my laptop or other materials and it’s been only one thing: Liberating.
No shoulder pain, no need to think where to put my bag when sitting down for coffee - just walking with my arms free. No more “Let me get my bag”,“Where is my bag?”, “Is it in my bag?” or brief panic stricken searches for my wallet at the checkout counter. Less weight, less worry and more agility and freedom. So take it from me a purse-ditch veteran no matter what you tell yourself:
Do you need any more reasons to ditch your wallet?