Do you get a thrill every time you come home from the mall with bags
full of bargains? Have you ever bought more than one pair of shoes at
a time and then only worn each pair a couple of times? How many things
have you bought lately that you could go without? If any of this sounds
familiar than you may be a shopaholic.
In today’s society it’s hard not to want to buy all the best new clothes, gadgets, and gizmos. We are bombarded daily with advertising and channels dedicated to the lifestyles of celebrities. However, that uncontrolled urge to shop can have negative effects on your job, family, and obviously your finances.
These are some of the warning signs to watch for in your spending habits.
Shopping emotionally- Meaning that you go shopping because you are angry, depressed, lonely, guilty, or even happy. Many people will feel guilty if they have over shopped, but will continue to shop to make themselves feel better only to feel the guilt again afterwards. This emotional cycle can continue to deteriorate your finances.
You may feel euphoric or excited while spending. This feeling is related to those who have addictions to other challenging activities.
If you have items that have not been used or still have tags on them, you may be spending for the sake of spending itself- You are not fulfilling a necessity, but rather for the feeling it brings you.
Buying in quantities that exceed your initial intentions- If you set out to buy a pair of new shoes but come home with 3 or 4 new pairs.
Abuse of Credit Cards- Using credit cards for purchases not knowing if you will be able to pay them off during the next billing cycle.
Lying about your purchases- If you lie about how much an item cost or even hide the purchase completely from your significant other.
Not having enough money to cover your monthly bills or savings- Having to cutback on groceries or other necessities due to shopping or not having any money in your savings account for emergencies.
If there are strains in your relationship or fighting over reckless spending- If your partner has expressed their displeasure with your spending habits, but you continue to over-spend.
If you do not understand where your money has gone for the month- Many people make a very good income and still find themselves in large amounts of debt. You may be living in a lifestyle that does not match your income.
If you feel that you may be a compulsive spender, it is important to seek help to control your spending. There are programs like Debtors Anonymous that have 12-step programs that will assist and support your efforts.
If your finances have suffered due to a spending problem, it is a good idea to contact a credit counselor to help you deal with creditors and educate you on financial responsibility and the steps needed to repair your credit.
There are some things that you can do to help break your habit. First you can get rid of your credit cards. By taking away the tool of temptation it will make it harder to make the purchase. Don’t shop by yourself or with someone else who may be a compulsive shopper. If you must go to the mall, go with someone you consider financially responsible and will help you avoid any urges.
Try finding a new hobby. Find an activity that can take up the time you previously spent shopping. Just make sure your new hobby doesn’t cost a lot of money or requires you to purchase a bunch of tools or equipment to get started.
There is not a lot of focus on the problems of compulsive shopping. It is often used as classic sitcom material as a spousal argument good for a laugh or two. Some may say our government has a spending addiction; we’re only a few Trillion in debt. So it is no surprise that there is little attention focused on compulsive spending. The fact is that it has and still is causing many people agony and financial distress. It is important to get out of that rut and start the recovery to financial responsibility.
Pioneer Credit Counseling is a bonded, non-profit credit counseling agency offering debt management programs, financial counseling, bankruptcy counseling and housing counseling nationwide. Call our friendly counselors today at 800-888-1596 or visit www.pioneercredit.com.
Our accredited credit counselors will help you take control of your financial life and get out of debt faster than you can on your own. We offer a debt management program that will stop the collections calls, lower your monthly payment and provide you peace of mind. Our pre and post bankruptcy counselors provide an easy process for you so you can focus on rebuilding your financial being.
It is our policy at Pioneer Credit Counseling not only to help people get out of debt, but also educate in sound budgeting practices.
Pioneer Credit Counseling can help you get out of debt faster. Find out how through one of our Debt Management | Debt Management Programs | Credit Counseling | Financial Counseling | Housing Counseling | Bankruptcy Counseling | Financial Educational Materials
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