They say cut your coat according to your size, but let’s be honest, shopping for things you don’t need is always fun whether you have the money or not.
According to reports, buying things on impulse is exciting because it releases a chemical call dopamine that makes you feel good. Basically shopping is like a temporary high and like any other drug addiction, you must feed it.
However, impulse buying is fun until it isn’t. You will constantly feel the nudge to buy stuff even when you don’t have the money and this is where debts start to stream in and bigger responsibilities are ignored.
Before you reach a point of no return, here are ways you can try and resolve your erratic shopping behaviour:
- Have a budget you can follow
In most cases you will fall prey to impulse buying because you lack a budget. When your money has no designated proper use before it gets into your account, you are likely to be lured into things you don’t need.
Be realistic when coming up with your budget and give yourself a break.
Impulse buying is a problem that will take time to resolve, give yourself room to fail and try again.
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- Allow yourself to spend on the budget
Curbing a shopping problem is like rehabilitating a drug addict, you cannot take away the addiction at once and expect instant change.
It will take time and some will, as you prepare your budget give yourself permission to spend. You can allocate a given amount to treating yourself on the budget in order to buy something fun.
This way it will be easy to be in charge of the amount you use rather than taking any amount whenever you can because you can.
- Shop with cash and a list
Whether you are going house shopping or just for fun it is always important to have a plan. When you go shopping with a list and exact cash you are less likely to deviate from your shopping plan.
Walking with credit cards and extra cash is convenient for impulse buying because your mind will register the money as available, leave them at home.
Also change your routes, try shopping in places you are not accustomed to, you are less likely to meet your favourite vendors.
Window shopping is also another thing you should avoid like a plague when you go shopping. Lusting over things in the pretense that you won’t buy them doesn’t make the situation better. It only gives you more options of items you don’t have and want.
- Wait awhile before making a purchase
The easiest way to know if you really want something is by waiting a day or week longer before making a purchase. In some cases, it might just be a passing urge or emotion and you will realize you don’t even need the item.
When you sleep on a shopping decision, you put some space between the emotion and transaction. However, if you still feel the same way after giving it some thought, then you can go for it.
Also some people follow the 30 day rule. It basically works the same way only that you have to wait 30 days to make the purchase which can be daunting, but even after that and you still feel the same about the item, go for it.
But in the case that your urge for the item dies down, you instead save the money. The 30 day rule can be a real struggle than waiting a day or week but it will be worth it in the long run.
- Unsubscribe from email alerts and hot deals
This is especially to those who are always on their phones and computers, who are likely to receive alerts and promotional messages informing them of new items and best offers in town.
What you don’t know doesn’t hurt you, right? When you are not aware of new purchases or best deals you won’t be tempted to spend money on unnecessary items simply because they are cheap or running out.
Another thing you can do to help your situation is informing your friends of your struggle, so that they don’t unknowingly lure you to their shopping sprees. Instead they can check on your progress and help you shop the things you need in case you don’t trust yourself going shopping alone.