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Are you an emotional spender? If so, you are definitely not alone. By acknowledging there is a problem, we can start to take actionable steps how to stop emotional spending. I think many of us struggle with impulsive spending, and we all know that this can be an issue (especially for us free-spirited nerds). As you start experiencing stressful situations, such as grieving someone’s death or dealing with depression or anxiety (daily or intermittent) or perhaps something has happened in your life where someone made you feel small or insignificant, you tend to go out and hit the slot machines or go to the store and swipe the credit card.
TJ Maxx is my favorite store in the entire world. Okay okay…maybe it’s second to HomeGoods, but they’re owned by the same folks, so they’re kinda the same monster. So I’ll go into TJ Maxx, and on a normal, regular mindset day I can just walk into the store walk around to take a look at things and browse. Sometimes I’ll pick up a notebook because I’m a notebook geek, and I put it in my cart take a look at it only to put it back on the shelf once I’ve realized I already have about 15,000 notebooks so I really don’t need one. But if you’re not in the right frame of mind and you’re super emotional and vulnerable you can easily sabotage your financial goals by going shopping while you’re in crisis mode. If you go grocery shopping when you’re emotional you’ll tend to buy more junk food. If you just go browsing around for things you will tend to justify buying something because you’re super emotional, and you feel like maybe this will make you feel better. Then you’ll have the problem of feeling guilty after the fact because you busted the budget and you spent money on something that you probably shouldn’t have even considered buying in the first place!
It’s all in your Mindset
So it really comes full circle. It comes right back down to your mindset and your emotions and learning how to deal with it as opposed to putting a band-aid on a problem that already existed. There are a couple of techniques that I use personally when I’m in a bad frame of mind and I feel like going out and spending money. Maybe that’s part of my free-spirited nerd syndrome, but I hope by sharing these, you will consider thinking before you overspend. George Bernard Shaw once said:
“Progress is impossible without change, & those who cannot change their minds
cannot change anything.”
How to Stop Emotional Spending, Once and for All
The first thing that I do is I always pray and meditate because talking to God for me will calm my mind. It will relax me in a way that no Earthly being can. If you can relax your body and your mind and just really let God talk to you and open your heart to the real problem, you will be able to forgive yourself or forgive whoever has hurt you so that you can move forward and find relief.
The second thing that I do is I take a relaxing bath just to calm my mind. According to Saltworks, Inc., the wonders of Epsom salt have been well known for hundreds of years and, unlike other salts, has beneficial properties that can soothe the body, mind, and soul. Some of the countless health benefits include relaxing the nervous system, curing skin problems, soothing back pain and aching limbs, easing muscle strain, healing cuts, treating colds and congestion, and drawing toxins from the body. One of the simplest ways to ease stress and stress-related problems is to soak in a tub full of hot water with a few cups of Ultra Epsom® Salt. I will throw some Epsom salt in there and just relax and, yes, once in a while my kids bang on the door, and I have to tell them to go away. But for the most part, I can enjoy a quiet bath once in a while and just really calm my mind. Most of the time, I will combine the prayer and meditation with the bath so that I can just be still for a moment.
The last technique that I would say is a major helper to stop emotional spending is definitely staying away from the store when you are in a vulnerable state of mind. So this emotional “funk” may last several days. You may have had your feelings hurt by someone, and it takes a few days to get over it. Stay away from the store during those three days or however long it takes because I can promise you that if you do go to the store, you will spend money on things that you do not need, and that is the exact definition of emotional spending. If you struggle with depression, consider having a friend or family member go shopping with you. Let them know that you struggle with overspending, and you need an accountability partner to keep you in check. There’s no shame in having a support system as you journey to spend less and save more.
I hope this is helpful for you guys. I definitely felt it in my heart to talk to y’all about this today, specifically. I have been more emotional the past few days, and I recognized this in myself. I hope that it helps you to think before you shop so you can figure out how to stop emotional spending. If you found these tips helpful please give be sure to leave a comment and let me know how you struggle with emotional spending. Where’s your go-to place to shop, and how do you stop emotional spending? Also, be sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel if you found this of value and you think you could use some of the tips and tricks that I have for keeping your finances in order.
Life is a collection of memories and experiences. There are ups and downs. I am so grateful for God’s grace and am on the journey to a renewed spirit, free of perfectionism. Perfection Hangover offers the sober truth – no filter.