Are your spending habits out of control? Do you know that you shop too much and it isn't even really making you happy? Here are some tips to curb your shopping and help you stop spending so much money on things you don't need or even want.
Know What You Own
Take time to organize what you own by going through and getting rid of items you no longer wear, like, are too dated to display, or -- in the case of perishable goods -- those that have expired. Once things are organized, it will be easier to check out what you already own the next time that you think that you "need" something. You may already have what you think you need to purchase, but you don't know where it is.
Stop Using Credit Cards
Adopt a "cash-only" policy, or use your debit card when you shop. Credit cards can add to the temptation to spend more than you can afford. You might want to keep one emergency card on you for true emergencies. Try the cash method for a month and see how it works for you.
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Don't Shop When You Are Bored, Mad, Or Sad
Hitting the stores when you are mad at your husband, "so you can hit him where it hurts" isn't a good way to shop. Or going out and buying something your wife will not like that is completely unnecessary and just add to your "junk" will cause friction. Buying right after a break up can result in buying more stuff that you do not need. A lot of people shop when they're bored and end up buying things they don't even want.
Avoid Shopping With Other Over Shoppers
Shopping with someone who spends too much can affect your shopping habits. You can always do something else with that person that does not include spending money recklessly. Instead, shop with a frugal friend who often leaves stores empty handed or shop by yourself so you don't feel temptation to buy more than you need.
Wait To Buy It
If you allow yourself time to think about your purchases, you may end up realizing the items are not necessary today. By asking a store associate to put the items on hold, or just leaving them at the store until the following day, you may decide they aren't items you need to have. Best of all, when online shopping, put it in your cart and wait a week or a month to buy.
Look through your recent purchases, are there things you can return? You might realize you don't really want those jeans you bought and you already have a closet full of jeans you like but don't reach for.
Identify the Purpose
Part of breaking the habit of shopping is knowing what purpose it will fulfill. When the purpose for what you want to buy ends up being vague, put it back. You can always buy it once you know why you need it.
Examples of buying an item for a purpose:
I need a present for a birthday I am attending next week.
I need a new mascara because my old mascara is done.
I need to buy a birthday cake for a birthday this weekend.
Examples of buying an item without a purpose:
I may need a birthday present in 10 months and these shoes are so cute!
I love this new release of makeup, or special edition eyeshadow palette. Even though I probably won't like it or even end up using it.
Someone is already bringing dessert for the birthday party but I'm going to buy one too.