Is your inner-shopaholic running amuck? Do you find it impossible to hang-up when the mall calls? If this is true, let’s see if we can bench your inner-shopaholic by altering unwise shopping habits.
Compulsive shopping and overspending are addictive behaviors. Experts believe shopping compulsions stem from faulty thinking. The next time you get the urge to shop-’til-you-drop, go directly to your closet.
How many little black dresses are hanging there, with price tags attached?
I thought so…
The first healing step if you are a compulsive shopper is admitting you are powerless to hang-up when the mall calls.
Need another example? Where does a woman get the compulsion to buy another lipstick when she already has enough to line the lips of every woman in Texas?
The answer is: nobody really knows. The medical community labels compulsive buyers as having “poor impulse control”.
Compulsion = Impulsive Shopping stems from the thrill of the win. Impulse buyers, lured by a store closing, estate sale or early bird special whip out the plastic and buy stuff they don’t need, won’t use or quickly tire of.
Impulsive behavior seems like fun – at the point of purchase. Pulses rise; demeanor becomes animated, resulting in a “high”.
According to Ruth Engs, EdD of Indiana University, “…endorphins and dopamine, naturally occurring opiate receptor sites in the brain, get switched on and the person feels good…”
Solution = Call-Waiting Put the mall call on hold and give yourself permission to cool-off for three days. Resist buying on the fly.
Know this: we feel most vulnerable when fatigued, frustrated or depressed. Spirits lift with each crinkling sound of pastel tissue when the cheery sales person wraps our new something or another.
Assigning a mandatory cooling-off period, allows time for rational thinking.
Compulsion = Therapeutic Shopping bridges the gap when we’re lonely, anxious or depressed.
Solution = Wake-up call arrives with monthly bills. How many maxed-out credit cards does it take to screw in a light bulb in your consciousness?
Know this: retailers pitch an exquisite experience, seducing us to believe we can buy our little corner of happiness at the mall. What works for the short haul actually fuels depression when the bills arrive.
Use the wake-up call as an opportunity to examine what you are hoping to gain emotionally through therapeutic shopping.
Putting a True Perspective on compulsive shopping will happen naturally when you examine your values. For example, you may value creativity, connection with friends and self-respect.
Are your values congruent with your shopping habit? Could the hours you spend shopping be used more wisely in enjoying a leisurely dinner with your best friend or sketching passers-by in the mall? And, watch your self-respect rise when you begin enjoying a healthier financial state.
Bench your Inner-Shopaholic by beginning a gratitude journal. Gratitude allows us to see our reality in a different light.
Hanging-up when the Mall Calls gets easier with a support group. Have you considered starting your own spiritual group?
Sharing truth and encouraging each other in a spiritual group takes the focus off of spending and puts it on our authentic selves.
Know this: the mall doesn’t offer what we really want. Money can’t buy inner-peace or sustain joy.
Everything Spirit offers is free.
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