I have a question for you: Do your spending habits spark joy?
Last month Marie Kondo’s simple philosophy had me thinking about more than just my clothes. I love a good closet purge, but what about the thing that gets us in the predicament of needing to purge in the first place? Shopping. My spending habits are far from out of control, but I’ve started becoming aware of how many things I buy that I either regret or feel meh about later. Think of all the money I could save for travel!
I decided to challenge myself to only spend money on necessities for the month of May, which mainly meant food, gas, savings, and money for my joint account with Worsham. I wanted to see if I could actually stick to my ideal spending (see my Money Edit post here).
Let’s cut to the chase: I didn’t end up sticking to it, but I’m happy about it (keep reading to see why). Here’s what I learned during my May Money Challenge!
I Spend When I’m Bored – This isn’t totally shocking, but I was surprised at how many times my brain thought about buying things on a hourly (maybe even more) basis. It was ridiculous! Sometimes I just like the thrill of having something new on its way to my mailbox, ya know. Instead of giving in to my every purchase whim – even the ones that seemed semi legit – I wrote down a few things in my phone that I might actually want later like a new glass water bottle and Louis Vuitton key pouch (my potential birthday present from me to me). I even had things in my cart online multiple times and was like, why am I even doing this? I felt like an addict waiting for my next high.
“According to Ruth Engs from Indiana University, some people develop shopping addictions because they essentially get addicted to how their brain feels while shopping. As they shop, their brain releases endorphins and dopamine, and over time, these feelings become addictive. A professor in applied health sciences, Engs claims that 10 to 15 percent of the population may be predisposed to these feelings.” – PsychGuides.com
It Got Easier After Week Two (for a while) – Once I got past the first two weeks, not spending wasn’t such of a struggle. My brain wasn’t racing with a million things I “needed” or wanted. It was calm. I felt lighter and less anxious. It was a nice change of pace.[Read more…]