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Are You a Shopping Addict?Odds are that there are a lot more shopping addicts out there than many realize. The society we live in tends to glamorize materialism and keeping up with the Joneses (whoever they are), so that we all look shiny on the outside. The problem with shopping addiction, as just like any addiction, it can end up wreaking havoc internally and externally and you can certainly hit rock bottom.
Compulsive or addictive shopping occurs when you shop excessively, inappropriately, and out of control. You cannot control your impulses and it can cause you emotional and mental distress over time. Your obsessive thoughts keep you going until you can no longer control yourself and then you have to go shopping. It’s really a lot like other addictions in the way you base your life around it.
Shopping to feel better
Shopping addiction can begin by going shopping when you begin to feel a negative emotion like sadness or anger. You feel the feeling and then figure that you’ll feel better if you go shop for something you want. The shopping experience helps you get your mind off of what is troubling you and oftentimes you do feel happier after you’ve bought some items that you desired. The shopping behavior you use to try to help you feel better; to cope. This cycle can continue and become an addiction.
How can you tell if you’re a shopping addict?
There are some signs of shopping addiction that you can familiarize yourself with. Here are several:
You spend more than you want. Now don’t get me wrong. We all spend more money than we want to at times, but someone who is addicted to shopping will spend much more than they want and more often. We might go over a little, but an addict may go 5 times of over their budget and do this every weekend.
Buying compulsively. If you buy things compulsively, even though you don’t need the items, you could be a shopping addict.
You cannot stop shopping. Have you ever told yourself, “This is the last time I’m shopping for a while” and then found yourself back out the next weekend shopping? With money you didn’t budget for shopping? When you are aware that you shop more than you want to, it’s a good sign you’re addicted. You may even have negative consequences (credit card debt, angry spouse, etc.), yet you continue to shop anyway.
You hide your receipts. If you’re hiding your receipts from others, you may have a shopping problem. You don’t want to have to justify your purchases or feel guilty for shopping again.
You don’t have enough money for other bills. If you are out there shopping for items you don’t really need and don’t have money for food, rent, or others bills, you could have an addiction.
You’re miserable and only find shopping helps you feel better. Have you ever seen the show Hoarders? These people have a shopping addiction, as well as some other issues. Things pacify, but do not satisfy, so if you are shopping to try to feel lasting fulfillment, it just won’t happen.
Be honest with yourself when you look over this list. Do you shop more than you should? Do you feel you might have a problem? If so, reach out for some help. You want to get to the root of why you feel that shopping helps you feel better, because really it doesn’t. Dig deep and contend with the addiction, so you can live a life happy and free from addiction.
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