Sometimes I just need a mindless break. I need something to do that is mildly entertaining or gratifying and requires absolutely zero brain power. Trawling the web usually works, but it can’t be something like reading the news or a blog that actually requires me to think. Scrolling through online clothes and furniture shopping websites used to fit the bill, but I don’t let myself do that these days. It’s too dangerous. I know I might be tempted if I see some purty something on sale for just £29.99. So what to do?
For a while, I tried using Instagram as a replacement, but somehow it required too much thought. I had to think about who people were, what they were doing, and whether I should like, comment or respond. Too much thinking. So what then?
I recently hit on two perfect things. The beauty of them both is that they are shopping websites full of pictures of things that there is no chance in the world I could end up buying through a slip of willpower. That is because they are both things that cost way more than I could afford and that it would literally, physically be impossible for me to have at this time.
So first, house listings. I think it’s pretty common to browse for house sales listings even when you, like me, have no intention of buying a house anytime soon. It’s the perfect mindless thing to do because there are lots of pretty pictures of a multitude of house types to look at on the multi-listing websites, but there is no “Buy Now” button on the page. And it would be pretty hard to end up accidentally meeting a real estate agent for a viewing, putting in an offer and signing a contract, all on a loss of willpower blip. My favorite websites are Zillow for the US and Rightmove and Zoopla for the UK (they also have international listings, so think Tuscany! and chateaux in the French countryside!), but if you are really hardcore like me you can also look at the individual real estate agents’ individual website listings, just to mix things up.
And second, and somewhat less obvious, rugs! Rugs are the best—so many styles, so many patterns, so many colors. My preference is for oriental carpets, but they’re all great. And the best thing about them is that they cost tons of money, and you’re unlikely to have any space for them in your house. There is certainly no place for us to be putting another 6×10-footer in our over-filled flat! My favorite website for carpet browsing is carpetvisa.com, where we bought the one big carpet in our place that now makes it impossible for me to buy another. They have thousands-upon-thousands of rugs on the site, and once on that website, my non-thinking but aesthetic-craving brain could get sucked into the rug vortex for weeks. Just the selection of Tabriz rugs could send my brain on a multi-day trip.
So, if you’re looking for something mindless to do and don’t want to be tempted by the interweb of sales to spend any money, check out the Tabriz carpet I’m currently crushing on here and see where it leads you down the rabbit hole of pretty things to look at that there’s no chance you’ll buy! I mean, there’s almost no way you’d accidentally end up buying a £1,000 rug, amiright? (Although, if you are going to spend £1,000 on a thing, there are few better choices than a high quality wool rug that will last forever. Mine is one of my favorite things I’ve ever bought!)