Shopping Addiction or Compulsive Spending
Defined by the APA as: ” An impulse control disorder that is described at the compulsion to spend money without need or financial concern” is a pattern of chronic, repetitive purchasing. It also has similar features to other addiction based disorders, but without the intoxicating drug.
Although there are many varying symptoms of shopping addiction, here are some of the most common:
1. Shopping is done as a result of feeling upset, angry or sad. As with all addiction based disorders, we shop as a way to cope with other things going on.
2. Not being able to go out without credit cards. The urge to purchase may come over us, and we have to be able to make that purchase.
3. Buying items that you cannot afford.
4. Feeling guilt or lying about money spent. This can be particularly hard on our relationships
5. Spending a lot of time moving around money in order to cover bills and minimum payments.
6. Fighting with others about your shopping habits.
7. Losing control of your spending behavior! Because online shopping is something we can do 24/7, and many times we can make purchases with the click of a button, our spending can easily get out of control!
But don’t worry! There are things we can do to overcome this addiction.
1. Track your spending for a month. See what you need to spend on and what you can live without. Also, this shows us just how much we are spending each and every month.. it can be quite shocking.
2. When wanting to buy something, wait 30 minutes or longer.
3. Distractions! Use these to keep and/or take your mind off of shopping.
4. Seek therapy! Shopping addiction is just a coping skill for other things that are going on in our lives. Working on that in therapy can remove the reason our shopping addiction exists in the first place.
5. Pay off highest interest debt first & work with a debt relief company. They can help us better plan, manage and pay off our debt.
Link to list of debt relief companies: https://goo.gl/AGFda4
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