I used to be a shopaholic

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I am now a recovering shopaholic and spendaholic.

I used buying stuff as a way of cheering myself up and relieving boredom. Both were destructive behaviours with financial consequences. I could have had £40 left in my personal bank account which needed to last me another 2 weeks and I’d still pop online and treat myself to something. Not having any money to spend made me feel rubbish so I’d spend what I didn’t have to cheer myself up.  A vicious cycle.  I made no connection to my state of mind when doing this and thought it was the only way to feel better; and worse still that it was okay dong it.

Minimalism completely changed my way of thinking. I was on what could only be described as a de-cluttering purging extravaganza. I switched my way of thinking to ‘I need to get rid of more stuff’ rather than what can I add that will bring me more happiness.  I didn’t want to add more stuff and fail at living a minimalist lifestyle.

I have written before about the effect of Minimalism on my spending habits. View the first article here:

https://reynoldsmade.com/2017/01/28/the-best-money-saving-tip/

And also how I budget every month:

https://reynoldsmade.com/2017/02/18/lets-talk-money/

With that said I’m not perfect and I still feel little urges to spend money for no good reason. It’s usually when I view something online that takes my fancy or I think is aesthetically pleasing.

I’ve put some things in place to help with this and I thought I’d share them with you in case anyone else is still struggling to control their spending habits.  I hope they can help you like they did me.

  1. I set a monthly budget every month and transfer 51% of my earnings into savings in a not so easy to access account. If I have the urge to buy something I don’t need it gives me a cooling off period whilst the money transfers and by the time I get it I always transfer it back. Granted this has only happened twice but I know this has really helped.
  2. I stopped following bloggers and Instagram accounts of people who regularly post those haul articles and videos. I have also come across bloggers who claim to be living a minimalist lifestyle but post regular haul videos and they confuse the hell out of me.
  3. I also don’t follow fashion bloggers anymore as clothes were always my biggest weakness.
  4. I stopped browsing online stores so I wouldn’t be tempted to spend.
  5. I unsubscribed to all emails from my favourite retailers and amazon.
  6. I cut up my credit card and deleted all online saved card details so it would be more difficult to make a purchase. Retailers make it as easy as possible for you to spend your hard-earned cash. Don’t get me started on Amazon’s ‘one-click’ purchasing grrrr. Don’t think just spend!
  7. I’ve found healthier things to do to cheer myself up or relieve boredom – write a blog post, take my camera out, read an interesting article, go for a walk, make myself a cup of tea and do some deep breathing exercises.
  8. If you can’t stay off online shopping websites create wish lists and give yourself 2 weeks to cool off before hitting buy…this really worked its magic for me in the beginning. 2 weeks later I’d realise I don’t even like what I saved in the first place saving me tonnes of money! It will help you work on that instant gratification.

So those are the things that helped me. I’d love to know if you have any other tips.

I remember feeling so out of control and awful about myself but reading that others go through the same and how they tackled it was the first step to changing my unhealthy habits.

9 thoughts on “I used to be a shopaholic

  1. Robyn says:

    Great suggestions. I feel the same way about amazon 1 click. It’s easy for a reason. I still have shopping setbacks, but they are fewer and far between. It takes a while to replace one habit with another.

    Like

  2. mygenxlifeblog says:

    Loved the article. I was a shopaholic at one time, until I realized one day that I just wasted tens of thousands of U.S. dollars when my family down-sized from a 7500 sq ft to 3100 sq ft house. I had to throw and donate more than half of what we owned. From that time on, I had set up a home budget and spent money when I need to.

    Like

  3. infinitybeckons says:

    Credit cards are the root of all evil! When I was young (a long time ago), I made my first major purchase on a credit card (£1500 for a computer). Having access to credit and the ability to have stuff now rather than later was awesome, as was the dopamine rush when I “unboxed” the next thing, and the next thing, and the next.

    That was of course until I hit the limit and was forced to take out a consolidation loan, but hey my credit card was reset to zero which meant more stuff, dopamine on standby.

    Several years and several loans later, I was in a mess and it was only after meeting the soon to be wife that she helped me see the light and I have never owned a credit card since.

    However, fate it seems is not without a sense of irony as she now has two credit cards and the “live beyond our means” mindset.

    I cut both up recently and the air turned blue but she knows that any changes to our financial position would put us back eighteen years.

    The world of advertising with its ‘you must have this and have this now” mantra has a lot to answer for!

    Liked by 1 person

    • reynoldsmade says:

      Oh I remember my first credit card too! I bought my first ever car with one which funnily enough was about £1500! I do believe credit cards are pretty lethal. If you haven’t got the money then you haven’t got the money. People should save emergency funds for lifes ups and downs and not rely on so much credit. Good luck and don’t watch the adverts! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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