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Shopping addiction

Oniomania, or otherwise shopaholism, addiction to spending money, shopping addiction, compulsive shopping – all this is an uncontrollable need to spend money in order to improve your psychological state, relieve stress, compensate for feelings of depression or anxiety, loneliness, and increase self-esteem. At its core, shopaholism has similar reasons to alcoholism, gambling addiction and compulsive overeating.

There are five main signs of progressive oniomania:

  • the acquisition process occurs impulsively, under the influence of a sudden impulse;
  • in the process of other affairs, dreams of new purchases spontaneously arise;
  • unfulfilled desire to buy sharply worsens the mood;
  • there are many useless things in the apartment;
  • the wardrobe contains the same items of different colors or several variants of the same (for example, four blue shirts and five pairs of black trousers).

What are the first “symptoms” of an emerging shopping addiction?

So, you are a potential shopaholic if you have at least one of the situations described below:

  • you systematically drown out stress through shopping;
  • your addiction to shopping has an extremely negative effect on relationships with others: for this reason, conflicts arise with household members;
  • “Combing” stores, you waste a lot of energy, money and time, and you feel that all this would be better spent on something more significant;
  • at the beginning of shopping, you feel a powerful elation, and later you feel annoyed and disappointed;
  • useless acquisitions occur so often that they are already logged in;
  • in stores, you lose control over yourself and forget about the freedom of choice.



Doctors identify several causes of this disease. But all of them are mainly associated with psychological factors. Here are the most common ones.

Plastic and credit cards are one of the most significant factors that cause addiction. When a person does not know how much money he is spending, he can make various purchases without controlling himself. And as a result, shopping becomes a habit.

Shopping for pleasure or to cheer up. Very often when shopping, people forget about a bad day, various problems and relax. They think that this is a good way to escape from the hustle and bustle of life, they start to spend more and more money on things and become shopaholics.

The need to be different and feel special. Some people feel inferior to those who have a lot of clothes, shoes, furniture, etc. This makes them spend more in order to feel better and richer.

Some shopaholics use shopping to fill the void in their lives. Active shopping gives the buyer the maximum experience due to the release of dopamine in the body.

Influence of advertising. Many people are highly influenced by ad campaigns. TV commercials, bright banners and signs, inviting radio advertisements, etc. force a person to make many unnecessary purchases.

Some people just like to look good all the time.

Serious cases of shopaholism can lead to very dire consequences. Without shopping, a person falls into an even more severe depression than the one from which he tried to recover from shopping. A vicious circle is formed. A shopaholic who has spent all his money needs a new dose of purchases, he starts borrowing – a scheme similar to dependence on a game in a casino or on slot machines is triggered.

As a result, both he and his loved ones suffer from this, and the psychological relief that shopping supposedly gives to an addicted person, in fact, turns out to be just an illusion that does not solve life’s problems, but only temporarily pushes them into the background.



Types of shopping addictions:

Salesmania (sales mania) – a painful desire to buy things on sales. Cases of murder and suicide have been recorded on the basis of salesmania.

Label mania (label mania) – dependence on advertised brands. The pursuit of a “firm” turns into an obsessive state, into the inability for a person to buy something else, to use something without a brand.

Gadget addiction is a passion for the constant acquisition of all technical innovations, in 99% of cases unnecessary.

Junk food addiction is an obsessive desire to visit fast food chains.

Post-shopping depression – expressed in a low mood, irritability, apathy associated with a loss of motivation after acquiring a desired thing.

Studied ART-shopping, shopping in advertising, literature, cinema.

Who is shopping addiction?

Not only women, but also men are becoming addicted to shopping. And if women spend money mainly on cosmetics and clothes, then men buy things that emphasize their image – watches, mobile phones, etc.

Unfortunately, addiction requires a lot of money, and sometimes, in order to get the necessary emotion when buying, the addict spends huge sums, often getting them in debt or credit. Debts gradually accumulate and soon reach fabulous sums that simply cannot be paid back. The habit grows deeper, and often, in order to obscure the dissatisfaction from the habit of spending money, a person goes and spends again. It turns out such a cycle.

If you notice such signs of a shopping addiction in yourself, do not despair. You can also defeat this bad habit on your own, but you just have to try very hard!


Negative consequences

As already mentioned, shopping can trigger the development of some mental illness. Very often it causes various neuroses.

Often, a person suffering from this bad habit develops depression, which soon becomes chronic.

Affective insanity

It is a mental illness that occurs under the influence of a repetitive irritant factor and regular stressful situations.

The bouts of depression in this disease can last from a few days to several months. During this period, a person is in a depressed mood, feels an incomprehensible melancholy and sadness, almost nothing pleases him. Mental pain is accompanied by poor health. The person feels pain in the heart and stomach.


It would seem, at first glance, that shopping is dangerous, but experts say that a light dependence on shopping for clothes can lead to serious consequences, perhaps irrepressible desire to assert itself, even if in this way. Try it yourself for a start to overcome yourself using some tips:

  • control your emotions when you see the thing you like, do not take it right away, but try to return for it the next day, so you can wean yourself from impulsive purchases;
  • try to carry a small amount of cash in your wallet and set a limit on the card, this will save your money;
  • ask loved ones and colleagues not to lend you money temporarily until you get used to saving your cash;
  • replace shopping trips with active leisure, believe me, you can also experience the adrenaline rush.

Remember the “golden” rule of sales: when you see a big discount, do not rush to make purchases, try to weigh the pros and cons, then you can not only buy the necessary and high-quality item, but also save your budget.

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