Recognizing the Signs of a Shopaholic and How to Overcome Them

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Recognizing the Signs of a Shopaholic and How to Overcome Them
Recognizing the Signs of a Shopaholic and How to Overcome Them
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Many people don't know the signs and how to deal with shopaholics. In fact, this shopping addiction behavior is common. If left unchecked, shopaholics can cause various problems in the lives of sufferers, both economically and socially

Shopping addiction or shopaholic is one type of impulse control disorder in buying something. This condition was recognized as a mental disorder in the early 20th century, and until now sufferers are increasing often with the development of online shopping.

Recognize the Signs of a Shopaholic and How to Overcome Them - Alodokter

People who are classified as shopaholics make shopping the main way to get satisfaction and happiness. Even so, the pleasure gained is only temporary.

Signs of a Shopaholic

Shopaholicism is often experienced in conjunction with other mental disorders, such as anxiety disorder, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), or binge eating disorder. Shopaholics are usually seen in late adolescence and early adulthood (under the age of 30).

Difficulty or even inability to control the desire to buy things excessively is the main characteristic of a shopaholic. While other signs or characteristics are:

1. Have low self-esteem

A shopaholic usually has low self-esteem, so he often sees himself lacking in something. Therefore, shopaholic sufferers usually shop with the aim of feeling complete and increasing their self-esteem.

2. Feel intense joy after shopping

As with all kinds of addictions, a shopaholic often uses shopping as a way to drown out unpleasant emotions and fill emotional voids.

Usually, a bad mood caused by fighting, stress, or frustration triggers the urge to shop.

When he sees the things he likes and buys it, a shopaholic can feel happy and satisfied, then forget about his problems. This feeling of happiness makes him so addicted that it keeps repeating itself, especially if there is a trigger.

3. Feeling sorry for overspending, but keep doing it

Although feeling very happy after shopping, soon a shopaholic will usually feel disappointed and regret his actions. On the other hand, when he can't shop, he tends to get angry, frustrated, annoyed, can't enjoy life, even fall into depression.

So, even though he realizes that his excessive and even detrimental shopping behavior is a problem that must be stopped, a shopaholic will continue to do so in the future.

4. Shop secretly

The increasingly rapid development of online shopping can support and make it easier for shopaholics to hide their purchases. This is usually done because he feels guilty for his behavior.

A shopaholic also tends to prefer to shop alone rather than embarrass himself by shopping with other people.

5. Poor financial management

Just like other addictions, financial problems will also arise due to uncontrolled spending. A shopaholic feels he can't stop spending and will still spend more money on shopping, even getting stuck in debt.

6. Having trouble with other people because of their shopping behavior

Usually people around shopaholics will feel awkward in their behavior, for example buying things that are not important, forcing them to buy things that are beyond their capabilities, or often borrowing money for shopping.

Although not intended to deceive or harm those around them, shopaholics can be ostracized due to their behavior. Even those closest to him will feel tired because a reprimand or even a fight can't stop his bad habit.

In addition to what has been mentioned above, other signs that a shopaholic has are that they tend to spend most of their time just shopping, and plan or think about buying goods constantly.

How to Overcome Shopaholic

Stop shopping alone is not able to overcome the shopping addiction experienced by a shopaholic. Treatment for shopping addiction is usually carried out according to the severity and source of the problem.

Here are some steps you can take to relieve your shopping addiction:

  • Recognize and acknowledge that this behavior can harm you and must be stopped immediately.
  • Talk about your problems and their triggers with the closest people you can trust.
  • Enlist the help of the family to take over control of spending the funds.
  • Find alternative ways to divert free time that is usually used for shopping, for example by watching movies or reading.
  • Relax when there are triggers that make you feel frustrated because you really want to buy or can't buy something.
  • Avoid using credit cards and keep cash only in small amounts so you can't buy impulsively.
  • Shop only with friends or family members who are good at saving money and controlling spending.

You may not realize that the behavior of your family or even yourself is a shopaholic. Therefore, understand the signs. If not addressed immediately, shopaholics can cause big financial problems.

Especially during the pandemic when activities are very limited at home, many people run away by shopping to overcome boredom or emptiness. If you or someone close to you has signs of a shopaholic, don't hesitate to consult a psychologist or psychiatrist.

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