You already know what shopping addiction, also known as “Oniomania,” is if you’ve seen the movie or read the book “Confessions of a Shopaholic.” It is also probably the most socially acceptable addiction; we are surrounded by ads that tell us that buying will make us happier, we are encouraged to spend by politicians as a means of improving the economy, and for certain people, there is an allure of getting what everybody else has, which is also reinforced by peer pressure.
Unfortunately, the rise of the digital age, combined with the pandemic, has only helped intensify addiction, as everything we know has shifted online. Many people have lost the ability to resist virtual online shopping and online video shopping, which have now become the most common methods of retail. What is the explanation for this? For instance, online shopping sites have more flexibility – you have several choices for a single product. Second, shopping online is much faster and more convenient – it saves time and money due to price discounts. The Internet, above all, never goes down.
There’s nothing wrong with pampering ourselves once in a while. Even a little ‘retail therapy’ will help us feel better for a while, giving us a much-needed boost. But that’s just what it is: temporary. Shopping gives us a thrill or a “high” that is just brief. As a result, the distinction between healthy spending and shopping addiction boils down to how we do it – and how it impacts our mental and emotional well-being as a result.
The Signs and Symptoms of Shopping Addiction
· Wasting money when you shouldn’t be
· You are remorseful afterwards.
· You can’t seem to get your mind off shopping.
· It affects your relationships.
· You’re on the brink of going bankrupt.
· Your coping strategy is online shopping.
· You frequently keep your transactions secret from your relatives.
· You have a dispute with your spouse/partner/family about your transactions.
· You frequently purchase items that you do not need simply because they are on sale.
· You’re always purchasing and returning products.
· You’re spending more money than you have.
It can be difficult to avoid even though you know there are better ways to invest your time and money. So, let’s take a look at some methods for conquering your online shopping addiction.
1. Select “Unsubscribe”
If you find yourself tempted to purchase something every time a sales email arrives in your inbox, it’s time to unsubscribe. To stop impulse purchases, unsubscribe from all retailer emails. This also involves uninstalling shopping apps from your computer.
2. Use Your Wardrobe to Shop
If you have a history of overspending on clothing, you most likely have an overstuffed closet. If you want to stop buying clothing, a good way to start is to make more use out of what you already own. If you have a closet stuffed to the gills with clothing, there’s a fair chance you have a lot of items that haven’t been worn in months, if not years. This is your chance to put these things to use. You never know if the clothes you wear the least will become your latest staples.
3. De-Clutter Your Closet
The next move should be to purge your wardrobe of pieces you no longer wear or use, as well as items you’ve forgotten you own. Those that have a history of over-buying are all too familiar with feelings of overwhelm, remorse, and regret. When we’re surrounded by negative feelings, it’s difficult to choose an outfit that makes us feel good. Instead, we have a tendency to believe that our wardrobe is never good enough because it does not represent our beliefs.
4. Recognize the Buying Triggers
After you’ve dealt with the external problems, it’s time to look at your internal issues: what is motivating you to shop excessively? Some people shop as a coping strategy for severe depression, thinking that purchasing products will provide them with temporary satisfaction. Others, on the other hand, go online shopping to pass the time. The cause, however, can differ from person to person. It would be easier to cope with depression, anxiety, rage, shame, disappointment, loneliness, or even happiness if you can recognise your shopping cause.
5. Take Up a New Hobby or Activity
This is a critical move that you must take in order to accelerate your recovery. Find new activities to draw your focus away from online shopping, such as reading or joining a book club, watching movies, cooking, or participating in a sport such as swimming, badminton, tennis, basketball, or just following a simple exercise routine. Do this so that you have something else to do any time you consider using that shopping app.
6. Set Money Aside
“Don’t save what’s left after spending; instead, spend what’s left after saving.” This is the advice given by business magnate Warren Buffet. You will be wise to follow this advice because it will provide you with long-term benefits such as resolving rainy days at work or in the company, unforeseen medical emergencies, ensuring your children’s education, and so on. You will use the remaining funds to purchase necessities for yourself and your family.
Shopping addiction is just like any other addiction, and the first step toward healing is admitting that you have a problem. Following these steps will undoubtedly assist you in overcoming your addiction, but you must be prepared to give up. It’s quick to get swept up in the web of virtual shopping and online video shopping because they’ve become worldwide phenomena but remember: you have it in you to resist. Best wishes!