(A version of this article was published by the Huffington Post)
Over the past couple of weeks my sister was in town and, along with my mom, we spent a good deal of time in Dubai shopping malls, taking advantage of discounts during a seasonal sale. Having lost a few kilos in the past couple of months and after starting a new job in December, I had no qualms about treating myself to some new clothes, shoes and accessories. Like many women, I find buying new items quite gratifying.
This is especially so because in the past two to three years, I managed to work toward having financial freedom for the first time. I can now afford to buy nice things for myself and my loved ones while sustaining a comfortable standard of living, building my rainy-day savings and giving charity more generously than I used to.