We all know someone in our lives who seems to live, eat, breath and sleep shopping. This person is a compulsive shopper who must shop all the time. In the media, a person who’s a shopaholic is humorous, fun and exciting, whereas, in reality, a shopaholic is most likely the very opposite of what the media shows.
The media doesn’t truly show the real nature of the life of a shopaholic or their characteristics, and although most people can relate to a few of these traits, there’s a difference between people who shop and those who are shopaholics.
As harmless as being a shopaholic may seem, it is actually a serious issue that many people get help for, whether it comes from a psychiatrist or family members. Here are the characteristics of a shopaholic.
Most common actions
A person who rationalizes all purchases by saying that the items were on sale probably is a shopaholic. Sure, we all do this at one point or another, but the difference is that a shopaholic will buy something no matter what the price is; they will also buy items when there’s a sale just for the sake of buying. They feel like they need to shop and the fact that there is a sale going on provides them with more justification than when they shop without there being a sale.
A shopaholic is also almost always browsing for their next buy. They tend to do a lot of looking at stores in person or online. Most of the time, this ends with them buying what they like without even thinking and considering if they need it. Shopaholics also tend to sign up for email alerts from every single store they can think of, and are then glued to their emails waiting for discounts or the latest updates on the newest fashion trends.
Similarly, a shopaholic always sends photos of their new purchases to friends or family, and will also always display new purchases whenever they can. This way, they can show people the items they are proud of.
When it comes to going shopping, a shopaholic will approach it with the purpose of either buying tons of items or just one thing. Regardless of what they go for, they always end up buying more items than they thought they would—many of which are impulse buys of items they don’t need and won’t use. To them, all that matters is that they are satisfying the constant need to buy.
The closet and drawers of a shopaholic will be filled to capacity and then some. As a result, many items will still have the price tags attached because they were impulse buys that the person doesn’t need and has no purpose for.
Most common mental characteristics
The mind of a shopaholic also tends to focus on shopping. They tend to fit their schedules around shopping and only shopping. A lot of relationships end due to the partner not being able to handle a person whose life is all about shopping; in a way, shopaholics are in a relationship with shopping, which pushes away actual partners.
Shopaholic tends to try and conceal their shopping out of shame or fear that someone will realize their constant need to shop. They may even hide it because they have been borrowing money from friends and family because they are struggling financially but still need to shop.
They also may hide their shopping in case someone tries to prevent them from further shopping, the thought of which makes them as anxious as the action itself. The anxiety they feel can become very severe to the point where a breakdown or even bouts of depression can form along with them becoming very irritated and agitated.
As soon as a shopaholic gets their paycheck, they often spend it right away on items they don’t really need simply because they feel the need to spend. This means that shopaholics blow through their savings and any money they have really quickly, which leaves them not only feeling anxious about not shopping, but also about how they won’t be able to afford other things.
The fear of not affording actual necessities, such as rent, their electricity, utilities and food will also drive them to borrow money from friends and family, but this only causes more issues.
There is a difference between being a shopaholic and shopping for necessities, occasions, and fun. For a shopaholic, shopping is an addiction that must be satisfied, but there are ways to conquer it.
Have you recognized yourself in this article? Do you want to know how to stop shopping that much? You can always only carry a small amount of cash and have no credit cards. That way you will be forced to buy only items you need.
Or, you can talk to family, friends or a psychiatrist for help. Feel free to share in order to spread awareness and comment your thoughts below!