Friday, July 19, 2024

How To Stop Shopping Addiction

How Are Our Shopping Addictions Affecting The Planets

How to Stop a Shopping Addiction (How to stop wasting your MONEY)

Environmental experts say that simply extending a garment’s average lifespan by 3 months could cut the carbon, water and waste footprints of the clothing industry by up to 10%. But could our ever more conspicuous consumption be damaging us, as well as the environment? Bearing in mind that the average woman will spend 4 days of each year deciding what to wear, it seems it could be depriving us of sleep, at the very least. So is it time to say, enough is enough? Do we need to reign in our compulsive sopping habits?

We spoke to two fashion and beauty professionals who, between them, have managed to clock up 22 shopping-free months, to find out what they’ve learnt from their experiences – and why they think you should join them in their mission to stop shopping…

Joanna McGarry, beauty director-at-large for Stylist magazine, is 10 months into her self-imposed shopping embargo. Her reasons for swearing off clothes are two-fold, she tells us. Having recently married, bought a flat and begun a second degree, her previous patterns of spending are no longer “even in the vicinity of what is possible or sensible or doable,” she says. But reading a book whilst on honeymoon, “about our obsession with accumulating material goods,” clinched the deal for her.

Challenge Yourself To Avoid Spending

Having trouble controlling your spending? Consider setting up a challenge to only spend a set amount of money in a month or to go the whole month without shopping online. These challenges can help motivate you to break bad habits that lead to impulse buys and wasted money.

Once youve beaten your goal for one month, consider stretching it out for an extra monthtaking things one month at a time until youve broken your dependence on online shopping.

It can help to use a budget planner and expense tracker to help you keep an eye on your spending and identify where and how you could cut back on your purchases.

Lots Of Credit Card Debt And You Dont Know How You Got There

Theres a difference between having a real emergency, not having anemergency fund and having to put those expenses on a . But if you wake up one morning and find yourself in thousands of dollars of debt and genuinely cant recall how you got thereits probably time to acknowledge that you may be a shopping addict.

You can take a look in your closet at all your beautiful things, but I promise that once youre in a big debt hole, it will not feel like you got your moneys worth.

Other peoples definitions of a spending addiction sound similar. Psychology Today gives the following shopaholic profile: 90% female, with the problem often starting in the late teens or early 20s.

A shopping disorder descriptionfrom the Cleveland Clinic includes: preoccupation with and difficulty resisting buying unneeded items spending a lot of time doing research on items that may or may not be needed financial difficulties because of uncontrolled shopping and problems at work, school or home because of spending thats gotten out of hand.

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How To Recover From Shopping Addiction

Fortunately, there are some things you can do to manage your shopping addiction.

  • Destroy all credit cards and delete all digitally-stored credit card numbers. Instead, pay for needed items in cash or debit card. For big-ticket items, you can elect to pay by hand-written check.
  • Tell your loved ones about your problem and ask them to help you in your recovery.
  • Write a shopping list AND stick to it.
  • Avoid things like online stores or TV shopping channels. Ask a loved one to block these sites and channels on your computer, phone, and television, and then secure the password to unlock these items.
  • Whenever you feel the urge to shop, acknowledge it, and then do something constructive such as exercise, or take up a hobby that does not require you to spend.
  • Consider ways to make it more difficult for you to spend money impulsively, such as making your money harder to access.
  • Most importantly, seek treatment. Shopping addiction is a serious and complex problem. Once your brain has become accustomed to the high and instant gratification of compulsive shopping, you will need support to make lasting change. Support groups are waiting to help, and licensed mental health counselors can help make change easier with coaching and evidence-based plans.

True shopping addiction requires treatment if you want to make a full recovery. You will also need the help of friends and family to prevent yourself from sliding back into compulsive shopping after treatment or a counseling program.

Intervention For Shopping Addiction

Books Direct: " The Shopping Addiction Cure: How to Stop ...

An intervention as a carefully planned process that involves the family, friends, and sometimes even colleagues of an addicted person. Although intervention styles may vary, they generally involve gathering loved ones and friends to confront the person who suffers from addiction, while getting them to accept treatment for their condition.

Successful interventions include offering a plan of treatment, along with its phases, objectives, and parameters. A follow-up treatment plan is also necessary to ensure that the addicted person has a greater chance of recovery. Recovery from a shopping addiction requires ongoing support and encouragement from all family members.

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What Are Treatments For Shopping Addiction

Shopping addiction can be difficult to manage, as making purchases is a normal part of everyday life. Everyone has to purchase food regularly, and things like clothing, personal products, and cars from time to time. But simply ceasing to buy cant treat a shopping addiction.

Depending on the severity of the shopping addiction, the compulsive buyer may need to be cut off from cash flow.

Someone else may need to be in charge of their finances. In rare cases, a person with shopping addiction may need to check in to an inpatient addiction program.

Most often, a shopping addiction can be treated with behavioral therapy and individual counseling. The person with a shopping addiction must develop impulse control and also learn to identify triggers.

In many cases, shopping addiction may stem from deeper emotional issues or mental health conditions. If it stems from depression or other mental health issues, medication may help. A mental health expert can help determine if this is a possibility.

Treatment aims to interrupt the self-perpetuating cycle, face the issue, and develop new, healthy ways of thinking, feeling, and acting.

Also, creating a support network of friends and family and others with shopping addictions can overcome their issues and go on to live a healthy and fulfilling life.

What Help Is Available For A Spending Addiction

Beating a spending addiction will likely require help from a medical professional or support group. There are multiple ways to approach addiction recovery, depending on your needs and resources.

  • Support Groups. Finding those who have also struggled with addiction could make a significant difference in your recovery. There are support groups that meet locally, similar to Alcoholics Anonymous, where those battling addiction and in recovery meet to share support and their stories on what works for them.
  • Individual Therapy. Counseling services are available for all varieties of addiction and mental health disorders. One-on-one services offer personalized treatment to help you get on the right track.
  • Treatment Centers. Like many addictions, there are treatment centers available to break your spending habits in a controlled environment. These centers treat behavioral addictions with inpatient rehab and outpatient counseling.

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Avoid Using Your Credit Cards

can be incredibly convenient for making purchases online. However, overreliance on them can lead to steep debts. So, it can help to find ways to avoid using credit cards outside of actual emergencies.

Consider setting aside your unsecured credit cards . This can help you avoid spending more money than you can afford. Switching to prepaid cards can also help you set a spending ceiling for your credit-based purchases since you cant overspend your cards balance.

As an added bonus, if you fall victim to online credit card fraud with a prepaid card, you can only lose the balance youve loaded onto the card.

Problems Associated With Compulsive Shopping

How to stop shopping addiction, emotional spending forever: the psychology of a shopping disorder

People with shopping addiction often spend beyond their means. Although it may appear less harmful than other forms of addiction, such as drug or alcohol abuse, shopping addiction can and does create serious problems. Financial problems are the most obvious problems associated with compulsive shopping.

Without anything to stop the issue, people with this issue often spend until they absolutely can no longer buy new things. This may mean they have run out of money, maxed out their credit cards, and are unable to borrow funds to continue to feed the addiction. Shopping addiction may cause financial and even legal problems if those who suffer are unable to fulfill their other financial obligations because of their addiction.

People with compulsive shopping disorder may resort to borrowing money from family and friends in order to fuel their addiction. Relationships with loved ones may grow strained over time because people with shopping addiction have a tendency to continually borrow even if they lack the capacity to pay back their debt.

The shame and desire to hide spending often strains marriages and relationships. This can lead to strained or broken relationships because even patient and loving partners eventually become unable to cope with the consequences of the addiction.

Left unresolved, compulsive shopping can become just as problematic and self-destructive as almost any other form of addiction.

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Set New Rules For Your Wardrobe

Now that youve decluttered your closet, its time to set new rules for your wardrobe. For example, when I was trying to overcome my shopping addiction, I made a rule to only buy items in neutral colors .

This didnt mean I went out to buy a whole new wardrobe in neutral colors. Instead, if I needed something, such as a new winter coat, I would buy it in a neutral color.

Having a capsule wardrobe means I feel good about everything I own. It also cuts down the number of little decisions I need to make each day. Now I shop less often and more intentionally.

Below is a simple step-by-step guide on how to build a capsule wardrobe for beginners.

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Set Goals For Yourself Regarding Shopping

Next, if you want to stop your shopping addiction, you should set goals for yourself. For example, set a goal for yourself that you are not going to spend any money at all on shopping until the weekend. Or, when you leave your house, leave all of your credit and debit cards behind. Only take the cash you are going to spend. This is a good way for you to control your spending. You cannot exceed your spending limit if you do not have cards in your wallet. You can set different goals for yourself using different time frames.

For example, you can set goals for the amount of money you want to spend a single day. Then, you can set another goal for the amount of money you will spend in a week. After this, you can set another goal for the amount of money you will spend on shopping in a given month. Once you realize you can go without these purchases, these goals wont seem like they are that difficult.

Of course, there will be some purchases that are absolutely necessary. You need to budget for them accordingly. At the same time, if you go over budget in one area, you cannot spend as much money when you go shopping. Keep this in mind as you set goals for yourself. This is one of the best ways for you to take control of your spending habits.

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How Shopping Can Be Like Other Addictions

There are several characteristics that shopping addiction shares with other addictions. As with other addictions, people who over-shop become preoccupied with spending and devote significant time and money to the activity.

Actual spending is important to the process of shopping addiction window shopping does not constitute an addiction, and the addictive pattern is actually driven by the process of spending money.

As with other addictions, shopping addiction is highly ritualized and follows a typically addictive pattern of thoughts about shopping, planning shopping trips, and the shopping act itself, often described as pleasurable, ecstatic even, and as providing relief from negative feelings. Finally, the shopper crashes, with feelings of disappointment, particularly with him/herself.

Compulsive shoppers use shopping as a way of escaping negative feelings, such as depression, anxiety, boredom, and anger, as well as self-critical thoughts. Unfortunately, the escape is short-lived.

Items purchased during a compulsive shopping spree are often simply hoarded unused, and compulsive shoppers then begin to plan the next spending spree. Most shop alone, although some shop with others who enjoy it. Generally, it will lead to embarrassment to shop with people who dont share this type of enthusiasm for shopping.

What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Shopping Addiction

How To Stop Shopping Addiction

People who suffer from shopping addiction may experience anxiety when theyre not shopping and may talk or think non-stop about the act of shopping and making purchases. Many of these individuals lose interest in the items they buy as soon as they get home, and wont even use them. Financial hardship is a common sign of shopping addiction, as well as evidence of new, unused items around the home that seem to keep piling up.

Shopping addiction tends to be more common among certain personality types. People who identify as extroverts may use shopping to boost or maintain their physical appearance and social appeal, and become addicted to buying new outfits for every occasion. Those who tend to be moody and neurotic are also more prone to shopping addiction since these individuals make use shopping to self-medicate and relieve symptoms of depression, anxiety, and self-consciousness.

Knowing common signs and symptoms of shopping addiction can help you determine whether you or a loved one may need professional treatment.

Some of the signs of shopping addiction include:

Additional Signs or Behaviors that Could be a Sign of Shopping Addiction

Here are other signs and behaviors that indicate you or a loved one may be suffering from shopping addiction.

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Remove Your Credit Cards

If youre like most people, youve entered and saved your information on your favorite retailers sites so you can check out with the click of a single button. This makes it all too easy to plop something in your shopping cart and check out before youve really thought about the purchase.

Deleting all your saved credit cards means that when you want to make a purchase, you have to physically get up, get your wallet or purse, and then enter in your shipping and billing information. These few extra minutes, and the resulting annoyance, might be all you need to decide you dont want to bother with the purchase at all.

Another benefit of deleting your saved credit cards is that it will reduce your risk of identity theft. Retailers are victimized by hackers all the time, and when a data breach occurs, you wont have to worry about it.

Emotional Symptoms Of A Shopping Addiction

Like all addicts, shopping addicts may try to hide their addiction, and if a loved one is addicted to shopping, they may try to hide it from you. If you hide credit card bills, shopping bags or receipts, you may be a shopaholic. In some cases, shopaholics may try to hide their addiction by lying about just one element of it. For instance, a person may admit they went shopping, but they may lie about how much they spent.

Some of the other emotional symptoms you may notice from a shopaholic include the following:

  • Spending more than they can afford
  • Shopping as a reaction to feeling angry or depressed
  • Shopping as a way to feel less guilty about a previous shopping spree
  • Harming relationships due to spending or shopping too much
  • Losing control of the shopping behavior

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How To Cut Down Your Shopping Addiction

This article was co-authored by Trudi Griffin, LPC, MS. Trudi Griffin is a Licensed Professional Counselor in Wisconsin specializing in Addictions and Mental Health. She provides therapy to people who struggle with addictions, mental health, and trauma in community health settings and private practice. She received her MS in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Marquette University in 2011.There are 16 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. In this case, 85% of readers who voted found the article helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 80,657 times.

Shopping addiction, sometimes called “shopaholism,” can have major negative consequences on your personal life, career, and finances. Because shopping is so deeply embedded in global capitalist culture, it can be hard to tell when you’ve crossed the line.XTrustworthy SourceAmerican Psychological AssociationLeading scientific and professional organization of licensed psychologistsGo to source Fortunately, you can learn to spot signs of shopping addiction, promptly change your buying habits, and seek professional help if necessary.

Minimalism Isnt Living With Nothing Its Being Intentional About How You Spend Your Time Energy And Yes Money

How To Stop Shopping Addiction

If you

  • want to cultivate more intention
  • struggle with money in your relationship
  • have too much clutter
  • are addressing a shopping addiction
  • realize stuff doesnt make you happy

then stop shopping for a while.

1. Track your spending. If you want a big intention awakening, track your spending for 30 days or more. Write it all down groceries, toiletries, coffee, dining out, clothes, school supplies. Keep another list of things you want to buy, or almost bought along with the prices. Seeing what you saved simply by writing it down will give you more joy than any shopping spree.

I tracked my spending for 30 days a few years ago and realized I spent $225 on coffee in a month. That number shocked me into changing my ways and giving back.

2. Delay.Timing is everything, especially when it comes to an impulse purchase. Delay the purchase for 30 days and see if you are still as passionate about the purchase as you were initially. You may discover there is more joy in living without.

3. Identify the real need.Are you shopping because you are bored? Are you shopping away a broken heart? Is shopping a habit? Get serious about the why behind your purchase. Maybe a long walk, or good music will be better medicine.

4. Declutter.When you are actively decluttering and giving away things, you realize how quickly the joy of a new purchase fades.

Where do you enjoy spending money? Dont go there.

  • calm down
  • improve self-esteem

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