How to deal with compulsive shopping addiction

Carl Gustav Jung once said of the addictions, “Every form of addiction is bad, no matter whether the narcotic be alcohol or morphine or idealism”. Now, we can add one more type to the list i.e. the compulsive shopping addiction. It may or may not be as harmful as narcotics but Compulsive shopping addiction (also known as Oniomania or compulsive buying) is widely regarded a psychological disorder, which is identified by an obsessive desire to shop around. At first, it may seem like a very harmless compulsion; in the longer run it can have some serious repercussions, first on your finances and eventually, the other areas of your life. There are two main causes of this addiction, first being the domestic problems including low self esteem, feeling unimportant, and the second being the external factors, most notable being the wicked marketing tactics (yes, you guessed it right).

Whatever the cause, a person suffering from oniomania finds himself shopping excessively for no apparent reasons. Of course, it’s pretty normal and in fact healthy if we indulge in moderate shopping every now and then, however it becomes alarming when this necessity or leisurely activity starts turning into a fixation. Mainly because shopping requires time and money, needless to say both of them are precious and must not be wasted on unnecessary items. For some it might be a completely alien feeling to visualize shopping as an addiction but according to a research more than 6% of American population suffers from compulsive shopping addiction.

The worse thing about any of these addictions is the feeling of disappointment and regret that follows. Despite knowing the futility of the activity, it is incredibly hard for an addict, to break the vicious circle of compelling thoughts of doing something and lamenting later on. It worsens in case of shopping addiction because your friends and families are not able to realize the predicament that you are suffering from. Therefore, the first thing you should do is to discuss the problem openly with your family members. The best line of attack against any addiction is to get yourself busy, as it is often the idleness that allows your mind to run the sequence over and over again. Another thing to do is to record your negative feelings (that you get after the shopping) in some diary, doing so will keep reminding that the shopping is not as fulfilling as your mind makes it out.

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