Ideas To Help You Reform Your Shopaholic Ways
Shopaholic as defined by Webster's Dictionary , "one who is extremely or excessively fond of shopping." The definition seems harmless enough, right? To further elaborate, Webster's Dictionary also states "The word alcoholic refers to someone who has a serious disorder. Addictive shopping can be a serious disorder too, but the word shopaholic is most often used playfully to suggest mere excess rather than true addiction. Shopaholic first appeared in print in 1977. It was formed on the model of alcoholic, which was itself created many years earlier by combining alcohol with -ic, meaning "of or relating to." People evidently saw a parallel between someone addicted to alcohol and someone "addicted" to shopping."
DECIDING TO MAKE A CHANGE
1. Do you seek immediate gratification?
2. Do you justify the purchase with "I deserve it”?
3. Do you turn to shopping because of boredom?
4. Do you shop to forget about stress?
5. Do you shop to “keep-up” with friends, family members or co-workers?
6. Do you buy and return more items than you keep?
AFTER ASKING YOURSELF THE ABOVE QUESTIONS WHAT DID YOU DISCOVER?
CLEANING UP AND GETTING ORGANIZED
Try these very manageable steps.
Decide what stays.
Figure out ways to get rid of what needs to go.
Deciding what stays…
First, I trashed anything that was damaged, then anything with pills and anything that looked worn. Next was items that didn't fit, defined as too big or too small, as well as ill fitting items. Then I had to evaluate my “must-have” categories, for me that is Work Clothes - business casual and jeans, Event Clothes - items for weddings, church on Easter and Christmas Eve, gym gear and pajamas. Once I established my categories I built entire outfits to include clothes, shoes, handbags and jewelry. Once that project was accomplished I made piles of what had to go.
Ways to get rid of excess clothing…
POSHMARK OR EBAY FOR NAME BRAND MINT CONDITION ITEMS
CONSIGNMENT SHOPS IF YOU DON'T WANT TO TAKE PICTURES AND MANAGE THE SELLING PROCESS
THRED UP IS A HUGE ON-LINE RESALE SHOP (BETTER FOR STORE CREDIT THAN CASH PAYOUT)
GIVING ITEMS TO FAMILY OR FRIENDS
SALVATION ARMY, BIG BROTHER BIG SISTER OR SIMILAR CHARITY DRIVEN RESALE SHOPS
RANDOM CLOTHING DONATION BINS IN YOUR COMMUNITY
This process for me was a New Years Resolution (2016). Establishing your NEEDS is a big part of the process. I landed on 4 categories, that will differ from person to person. This will also change with a career change, professional corporate environment to a uniform environment. My place of business went from a professional corporate environment to wear jeans to work environment. I saved my business suits and professional dresses in collapsible storage bags in case my work situation ever changes. I also decided to take all the hangers in my closet and reverse the direction and whatever was not reversed by June I evaluated why I had not worn the item. If a plausible reason didn't present itself, then I would get rid of the item with one of the options above.
MAINTAINING A HEALTHY MINDSET ABOUT SHOPPING
3 THINGS TO ASK YOURSELF MAKE SURE YOU ARE SHOPPING FOR THE RIGHT REASONS
Why I am planning to shop / make this purchase, is it a want vs. a need?
How will this purchase affect my budget? And can I raise the money by selling something I no longer use or need?
Have I exhausted the other options to get what I need? (i.e. “Hand me down” or Craigslist)
IF THE PURCHASE MAKES THE CUT AFTER ASKING THE ABOVE 3 QUESTIONS MOVE FORWARD WITH THE PURCHASE
HABITS TO MAINTAIN TO STAY MORE SIMPLIFIED
Only buy clothing or shoes when a current staple is worn out. Once the purchase is made throw out the old article.
Each Spring/Summer and Fall/Winter I still reverse my hangers to maintain a sense of what I truly wear.
Decorate my home in “Season Neutral” colors (gray or tan) so again I am only purchasing when items are worn out.
ONCE YOU HAVE MONITORED WHAT YOU ARE REALLY USING, SELL AND DONATE WHAT DOESN’T FIT IN WITH YOUR SIMPLIFIED AND HEALTHIER MINDSET.
Writing this has been very telling on where I was and how far I have come. I am proud that I identified my emotional shopping and overspending, then took the necessary steps to get cleaned up. And now I have a plan to maintain a healthy mindset towards shopping and spending.
I enjoy not worrying about finances and feel proud when I have a planned splurge purchase. Now I actually have the funds to pay for my planned splurges without regret. Getting my spending under control has also afforded me the funds to travel a bit. Traveling provides that much needed reset to the day to day and a nice change of scenery. My son may or may not stay local for college so those additional funds will be available for me to visit him if he decides to venture away to college. I have several reasons to stay true to my “Reformed Shopaholic” ways and look forward to many new experiences.