How to Tackle Your Shopping Addiction for Good

Do you want to learn how to stop shopping? I will share how I learned to stop my shopping addiction and went from being a maximalist to a minimalist. I also want to update you on how my low-buy challenge is going so far.

Part 1: My shopping addiction

I have reflected a lot on my shopping habits. I decided to really cut back on my shopping with a low-buy challenge. I feel like this low-buy challenge was what I needed to realign myself with my values.

It’s an embarrassing thing to admit that I had a shopping problem. It wasn’t like I was going into debt or racking up tons of credit card bills. Nothing that dramatic. It was more subtle.

Online shopping

It was normal to see two or three boxes delivered to my doorstep weekly. I’d spend a lot of my free time browsing online.

Little by little it accumulated. I could blame marketing, social media, and ads. But it’s my problem and my actions.

Sale rack

I realized I needed to fill a deeper hole with these purchases but I would never feel content with these purchases.

Whether it was because of my insecurities, dissatisfaction, or just because I was bored, I feel like I try to beat the monotonous day-to-day routine by buying new things.

It’s the easy way out and it felt like I was treating myself. But there’s always going to be something shiny just waiting to take our money.

Shopping packages

I started to see this as a problem because I still had boxes left untouched after 10 months of moving in. My closets were overflowing.

My bookcases were full of unread books. I was still shopping and adding to the clutter and it was overwhelming to find anything in the house.

Reading outdoors

Shopping like this is out of character. Growing up my parents never gave us many gifts for birthdays or holidays. We’d take road trips instead and I don’t remember the few gifts I got. I do remember the travel experiences, though.

And spending every Saturday together watching the Simpsons – those are some of the happiest memories of my childhood.

My parents instilled in us the values of relationships and experiences. Somewhere along the way, I got off track.

Spending time outdoors

Part 2: Low-buy challenge

I needed things in my life to change. I needed to pause and reflect on my actions to gain clarity. I completely acknowledge and recognize that a low-buy challenge is a privilege.

At the same time, I think it’s important to open discussions about mindless spending and how it spirals out of control.

Using laptop

After doing this for a few months, I feel more in control of my time and money. I did stick to my rules and I’m proud of myself. I bought a few major things. The difference – I thought about it, I researched, and I don’t regret the purchases.

Holding surfboard
For example, I bought a surfboard and I have gotten so much out of it. It’s provided my therapy, workout, and meditation all at the same time.

Clothes on rail

I bought some clothes because I gained a little bit of weight. After visiting my family and eating so much delicious food, I put on a few pounds so I bought a few key pieces of clothing I truly need.

I had to remind myself that this challenge is not about obsessing over everything but it is about adopting more mindful spending habits in general.

Einstein once said, “We cannot solve a problem on the level of consciousness that created it.” This is so true. To change our habits, we have to understand the bigger purpose of why we started doing this challenge in the first place.

I had to understand and think about what was the true priority for me. What do I value most in life? Do I want to collect things or experiences? How do I want my time and money to serve me? And my favorite question is – if I was the only person on a secluded island would I still make that same purchase?

If you are doing a low-buy challenge I can give you one piece of advice, that would be not to focus so much on the rules and the details of the challenge but to find a bigger purpose and remind yourself about why you started the challenge in the first place.

Riding a bike

For me, the overarching purpose was to steer myself away from the materialistic mindset and to find more meaningful things in my life.

I have not once worried about my hair or what I was wearing when I was having fun with friends and family. No cool things will ever amount to the cool books I’ve read, plays I’ve seen, or movies I’ve watched.

Shopping addiction

Are you doing a low-buy challenge? Let me know how it’s going. Has it helped any shopping addiction you may have been feeling? Leave comments below to let me know!

Next, check out these 5 Easy Ways to Stop Your Capsule Wardrobe From Being Boring.

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