Spending addiction - can anyone help?(21 Posts)
I am at my wits’ end as I seem to be totally unable to stop spending on things I don’t need.
I try to stop and have spending bans but will then see something which is ‘just right’.
I’ve tried to be logical with my spending and make lists of items I know I use regularly and would like to re-purchase, or items that I have wanted for a long time – e.g. classic style of shoes ( I don't currently have a plain black pair of court shoes for instance!)
But I will then go shopping and sabotage said list with an impulse purchase. And guess what, I never seem to have those ‘key’ items that I really could use.
Has anyone else successfully overcome this hoarding / spending mentality? It’s taking over my storage, putting my relationships in jeopardy and causing me grief.
I just want to live a non cluttered, organised and stylish life. I’ve battled this for about 20 years now and am despairing of every getting myself sorted out.
anyone? Should I post in mental health instead?!
Hi OP, I've read around the subject as I can tend to overshop! I think one of the things that helps is to stop buying for an a lifestyle you want and rather to buy for the lifestyle you have if that makes sense?
Have you read the Marie Kondo book? That's all about living a clutter free life, and owning only those things that make your heart sing, which sounds like you're desperate for? I know a few people whose lives have been transformed by that book (and probably a few more who've tried and failed...).
Otherwise I'd suggest speaking to a counsellor or therapist and trying to get to the bottom of your need to keep spending, to see if there's something deeper driving it and help develop strategies to reduce your spending. Are you in any debt? Or is it just the accumulation of unnecessary shite that's bothering you?
I think it's very common, we live in such a materialistic world, we're constantly bombarded with information about stuff that will make us happier/ slimmer/ prettier etc, it's no wonder a lot of us are up to our elbows in unnecessary rubbish!
was just about to mention marie kondo. That seriously helped me. That and good storage. I also look for bargains so that when I shop I spend less than I have to. Admittidley that does mean I spend a little more on other stuff mostly dd. Best thing is to understand why you feel the need to buy certain items.
Hi OP. I've been overspending for years. In addition to the reasons you quoted I've self-identified other such as tiring work and commuting, problems with teenagers (shopping is so exciting and comforting), ageing (buying new things makes me feel younger). Last year I started keeping records on how much money I actually spent on clothes and shoes. Whilst not in debt, all disposable income was wasted. The amount horrified me and I went cold turkey for 4 months. I didn't find it that hard, but relapsed in the run up to Christmas. After a few high spend months I've decided to do cold turkey for a year.
It's not just wasting money, but energy and time I don't have on storing and sorting all this stuff.
yes, marie kondo helped me. I never had a problem as i never over did it but it was also the reason I never had any money to spare . I threw out bags and bags of stuff and the only thing i regret throwing out is one reebok pair of black runners. I have only bought two tops this year which is good for me. I was making a purchase every 10 days or so last year
I think marie kondo helped because she makes you value the space you're left with if it's free from too much stuff. throwing loads of things out makes you think and gives you clarity.
ps, I don't look for bargains when I shop for clothes but if i buy something for an occasion, it has to spark a serious amount of joy
No I can't help because I am the same. In fact probably worse, as I don't feel any guilt
Stop taking cards out with you, just say £50 then when it's gone it's gone?
Could you do away with your credit cards & put most of your disposable income in a long term savings account not easily accessible. If you don't have it you can't spend it. You probably have enough clothes to last at least a year
I am also the same.
I went out on Saturday and spent £25 on foundation because I was feeling self conscious that my skin looked shit. It was the wrong shade aand a horrible texture and I hate it and know I won't wear it again.
I feel sick that I spent all that money for nothing.
Marie Kondo sounds interesting, I think I'll have a look at it.
I'm the same as you... I've considered Debtors anonymous 12 step programme like AA but for spending money I don't have its do embarrassing.
I spent £125 on a white sheer top last week (I'm breastfeeding abs on maternity leave so not exactly practical) and £72 on a plainish navy blue one. On my cc!! Feel so ashamed.
I struggle too - not just with (mostly cheap and crap) clothes but other things too, any hobby I get into I splurge on everything for it then don't use most of it.
I've just got myself a Monzo account/card and I'm going to try setting myself a strict limit on that for any spending money that isn't bills/essentials, if I splurge fine but then there'll be nothing left for socialising or anything else. I'm better than I used to be, but now need to really get a grip.
You could try the one in and one out method. That is if you buy a new pair of shoes then an old pair has to go. Or set a limit of x number of pairs of shoes and you don't go above that. In a shop say to yourself do I love this item. If the answer is no then don't buy it.
And online if you want something give yourself a 24 hour cooling off period. I agree with not using credit cards and online set yourself a limit. £25 per week on makeup and clothes. Or however much is appropriate for your budget. And if you want something else you have to wait till the next week. And if you want something for £50 then you wait two weeks for it.
I manage mine by buying the item but then deeply considering it over next few weeks (obviously whilst I can still get a refund)
I do a bit of a balance sheet eg what will it go with? When will I wear it? How often? Value per potential wear? Versatility? Is it a staple or a fashion item?
75-80% of things I buy go back
The blog Recovering Shopaholic has many useful articles. I also love Dr April Benson's book To Buy or Not to Buy.
I've struggled with overshopping for many years. Exploring the underlying needs helps a lot. Tracking spending and tracking clothes worn can also help.
Anyway, you are not alone!
It might help to treat like a nicotine addiction that you are trying to quit. Take a day at time and put £1 (literally or metaphorically) in a pot every day you don't buy anything and give yourself a 'well done'.
Avoid all shopping trips / fashion magasines and whatever else gives you ideas. Sell what you own and don't wear on ebay or give to friends /charity shops.
Write a list of things you'd like to buy, such as court shoes, once you've saved enough or got your money from ebay selling.
I stopped buying magazines, unsubscribed from shop emails, stopped reading fashion blogs - all these things help lessen the 'want'. I started reading about minimalism, declutteting and reducing waste for inspiration. And tried to find hobbies other than shopping.
Don't give yourself a hard time though. Make one small change at a time
I sympathise as had several years of overspending myself. No simple answer. For me working out the main causes (& they were multiple) helped - some were fixable, some definitely are not - I've inherited my mother's tendency to keep things for "best" when no occasion is ever quite good enough. I'm aware of it now but still struggle to wear my very favourite clothes & use my nicest china etc but I have managed to stop buying yet more basic clothes for everyday use when I have lovely things with their tags still on.
Setting budgets, listing what I spend, piling things on a table or the bed & making lists of what I have is frightening & useful, listing things I want to buy & taking time to think whether I do need that item & when I'd use it or wear it helps, finding other things that I love doing other than shopping or browsing ebay or clothes websites on the net has been great.
I found the "Wearing everything I have in the wardrobe" thread last year on MN was really useful as have been the No spend in 2016 & now 2017 threads.
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