Shopping is a tradition loved by virtually every American. Some people who have the means enjoy going on a shopping spree regularly. As time goes on, this action may develop to a habit; and before you know it, addiction steps in. But does it mean that everyone who is crazy about shopping and does it regularly is addicted? How do we draw the line between being a shopping fan and being addicted to shopping, or as it is commonly called; a shopaholic? There are a few points that can help you determine whether you are becoming an addict. You should watch out and seek help if you start noticing these signs in your life.
1. You try to hide your shopping details
This is a fundamental sign of basically every kind of addiction. Many people will go out on a shopping spree occasionally and they could be exorbitant in their spending. There’s really no problem in this. It becomes a problem when this attitude starts shifting from “occasionally” to “frequently”. When you get to this point, you may start feeling skeptical about giving your friends and relatives particular details of your shopping. You may have been that kind of person who would always tell your friends when you are going shopping; maybe you even took them with you. But because you realize that you have started exaggerating how often you go shopping, you may start avoiding telling them about your shopping expeditions; or at least some of them. In some cases, you may admit that you went shopping, but fail to tell them how much you spent. When you start realizing such symptoms, watch out because you are very likely already addicted.
2. You spend more than you can afford
Spending more than you can afford is a clear and logical sign of addiction. If you are someone who just loves shopping and goes for it regularly, you will react reasonably to items you may not quite afford at that moment. You will say something like, “OK!!! This is way beyond my budget and I can’t afford it now.” Shopaholics will however not bother about the price barrier. They will rather spend on the item even when they know that it will lead them to financial crises. Financial difficulty as a result of your shopping habit is by the way another key sign of a shopping addiction.
3. You shop because you are angry or depressed
Research has proven that some people shop just to feel better after going through some emotional problem. They may do it to take care of issues like loneliness and lack of self control and confidence. Studies have shown that people who suffer from shopping addiction very easily get moody and may also have eating and drug problems. So if you are that kind of person who takes comfort food on a bad day, you are likely going to engage in reckless shopping as well; you will likely transform to a shopaholic. This is also called Compulsive Shopping.
4. You buy things you don’t quite need or did not plan to buy
Some shopaholics may not know they have a shopping problem. They may think that they are just excited about buying new stuff. But that is exactly what makes them shopping addicts. When you go to the shopping mall specifically to buy clothes, and then you find yourself buying a video game (despite having 3 others at home), you may think that you just got excited and bought a video game you did not plan to buy. But that is exactly what makes you an addict. You have an obsession for shopping. You buy things you don’t quite need and may not use for ages. Some experts say if you have unopened or tagged items lying for many months in your closet, you probably bought them when you did not need them. You’re a shopaholic!!!
If you realize that you’ve developed an addiction to shopping, there is no cause for panic. You can take our Test My Addiction Assessment. You will be able to tell the extent of your addiction, and our experts will walk you through the path of recovery.