While it’s normal to give into temptations occasionally, “shop till you drop” has the potential to be much more dangerous, when purchases shift from impulsive to compulsive. In fact, one might be grappling with a more serious condition: a shopping addiction; and it has the power to destroy a person’s financial and emotional health.
While it’s easier to identify other addicts as they show more obvious indications, Shopaholics might not be as clear. So, how do you identify one? Here are 5 signs to help you:
Excitement Of Buying Something New
They experience a sense of high excitement or an adrenaline rush while shopping. Experts believe that a chemical- dopamine (associated with pleasure) is released in the shopper’s brain when they spot a desirable item and consider purchasing it.
Give Into Temptation Easily
They can’t seem to stop at buying just one type of product and also find it very difficult to resist sales or attractive deals.
Frequent Unwanted Purchases
They are easily tempted by items that they don’t even need. It could be as small as a scented candle to big ticket purchases such as expensive designer bags or shoes.
Distress Sparks The Urge To Splurge
Some studies say that compulsive shoppers attempt to fill an emotional void and turn to shopping to ease the pain of coping with distressed circumstances.
Alternating Between Remorse And Rational
Shopaholics undergo mood swings of feeling guilty and pacifying themselves by rationalizing just about any shopping sprees.
Unhealthy Financial Situation
Most compulsive shoppers struggle to juggle accounts & credits. In fact, some even shop to ease the guilt of having bought too much last time and end up spending more! It’s a vicious cycle.
Fortunately, there are some simple ways to deal with this. Activities such as exercising, reading, listening to music, etc. could potentially be good distractions.
Likewise, avoiding shops or websites that tempt; carrying less/just enough cash and leaving credit/debit cards at home; However, if compulsive spending continues, then getting a professional help via counselling or therapy is the best choice.