Do you have piles of clothes you don't wear and boxes of shoes you couldn't care less about? Do you have to buy every shiny thing you pass on the street? This habit of not being at peace with yourself till you compulsively buy what you set your eyes and heart upon is known as impulse buying. There is no logic to impulse buys. You feel satisfied for a few minutes after you've made your purchase and then this excitement is replaced by an empty, aching feeling of yet again spending your money on something you might never need or use. Here are five smart ways to say no to impulse buys.
Set aside a budget for essentials
When you receive your monthly salary, take a portion out of it for rent, fuel, and groceries and put the rest away in an account you have no debit or credit card access to. Better yet, invest the remaining savings smartly so that you don't have the urge to make impulsive withdrawals. This way, when you have to choose between necessary and frivolous expenses with the money you have at your disposal, you'll always opt for the former.
Give away your credit card to someone for safe-keeping
Credit cards are one of the major reasons for most people's impulse purchases. If you can, don't own a credit card in the first place. If you have one already, break it. But if you feel like you need to keep the card for emergencies, give it to someone for safe-keeping. This way, whenever you feel the need to make impulse buys, it will not be in your reach.
Go shopping with a trusted friend
Talk to your friend about your problem and request him/her to accompany you when you go shopping. When your friend is aware that you are likely to make impulse purchases, he/she will distract you and help you focus on the essentials you need to buy. However, make sure the friend is not an impulse buyer like you or you'll be in deeper trouble.
Make a shopping list
Before you step out to go shopping, make a list of the things you need to buy and another list that contains all the items you DON'T need. Take both the lists along with you. Stick to the items on the first list while shopping and whenever you are tempted to add to your cart a thing you don't need, just look at the second list to remind yourself of your priorities.
Take matters into your own hands
You need to learn the art of control and self-awareness for the next time you go shopping. If you see a piece of jewellery you're never going to wear but still want to buy, give yourself five reasons not to purchase it. When you reason with yourself and make yourself see that you can spend Rs 1,000 on something more worthwhile, you'll stop making impulse purchases.
Getting rid of the habit of compulsive shopping is no easy feat. But you need to strengthen your inner resolve to ensure that it doesn't affect your finances and future in the long run.