A few days ago I wrote a post about impulse buying and 6 tips that can be used to try to change that habit & mindset. Impulse buying, excessive spending and just too much stuff plagues many households. For some it is just a minor problem causing small amounts of discomfort, but for others it amounts to intense credit card debt, family strife, excessive stress and even illness related to the above.
Here are my 6 tips to Curbing Impulse Buying (in a condensed version) To read my entire post click here! 🙂
1. Take a picture instead. Snap instead of spend!
2. Keep a list. Write down what you need and what you find. Do some research.
3. One in two out. Buy one item then donate or give away two.
4. Think big! Quality over quantity.
5. Just wait. Pause, hold the item. Visualize its function and purpose.
6. Stop and think! Why are you shopping? What need might it be filling?
Joshua Becker of Becoming Minimalist just wrote a post containing specific questions to ask yourself before buying anything. He lists 3 questions per potential purchase of Food, Clothing, Technology, Housing, Transportation, Insurance, Entertainment, Furniture/Décor, and even Pets.
Read his full post here!
Basically by asking these questions we stop and really evaluate our purchase more in-depth, past the ‘I want it’ stage. We may want something, but whether we can afford it, or need it, or can continue to pay for something long-term, or if the item will have extended cost tied to it, or take away time from another area of our lives are all real questions to ask ourselves.
We live in a society and age where patience is not a practiced virtue. We want what we want and we want it NOW! This is troublesome. There is nothing wrong with not having the newest whatever. Nothing wrong with saving and waiting. Driving a car you can’t afford will not make your life easier. Eating out many times a week or month will not help you save. Using entertainment or shopping to escape will not solve any underlying problems. Having any debt adds stress and money trouble is one of the main causes of family discord. Sure, it may feel like a quick fix at the time, but what are the long-term consequences?
I have found for me it boils down to LOVE. When I do what I love, or buy what I really love (after research, waiting, really thinking, and saving specifically) I feel content. There is no added stress. It is important I am intentional and meaningful in my purchases no matter what category they are.