Have a stressful day? Week? A lot of people will jump to retail therapy to help. I’m here to tell you, put down the credit card! Many of us jump to shopping during periods of stress because it provides a sense of control. It is incredibly easy in this day and age for retail therapy with access to online shops. It can be done pretty much anywhere with stores even being present on our phones. However, this is usually unchecked shopping meaning that we are not keeping with a budget or monitoring how much we are actually spending. The other big thing to remember is that shopping is a short term solution. If you can find an alternative, it will be better in the long run and you will be able to avoid stress spending.
What’s the problem with stress shopping?
I mean what’s wrong hearing that swish of the credit card. You get a dopamine rush and things seem to be better. The problem is that when we shop for the purpose of stress relief, then we are unlikely to take into consideration how much we are spending. This can throw a huge wrench into our budgets because we are not taking this into account when planning. Another possibility is that with an impulse buy, you may regret buying certain things. Somethings are easier to return than others and could end up cause some stress. It is best to avoid stress spending altogether.
Tips to avoid stress spending
There are a lot of alternatives for stress shopping out there. Exercise has been shown to help with the body’s way of dealing with stress. This is a very positive way of dealing with these types of situations. However, exercise is not the first choice by everyone. I still recommend this but there are other options as well.
Meditation can help to ground yourself when feeling overwhelmed by stress. This can help to regulate the blood pressure and heart rate and thereby reducing the sensation of stress.
If you are still not a fan, even going to see a movie or watching Netflix or Disney+. They are not as productive but provide a reprieve from stressors. With these, you are not spending as much money as retail therapy.
Key take away!
Packing away your credit card can be a great way to avoid stress spending, or get rid of credit cards. If they are used responsibly it can be a great tool but can do great harm to your credit if not used carefully. This is a common coping mechanism but doesn’t need to be. Be cautious when you are feeling stress. By avoiding stress spending can save you a lot of money in the long run. If you do need to shop, make sure to plan ahead of time as this will reduce the risk of impulse buying. Planning and keeping your budget in mind will help to keep more money in your wallet for other things
Have you ever caught your self doing this? Let us know in the comments below!