With over 18 years experience, Elissa is DPN’s Enterprise Strategy Leader and a passionate advocate for helping people to build financial independence.
Emotional spending refers to the act of spending money to purchase goods or services in order to combat negative feelings. While this act is a common occurrence amongst many people, it can have detrimental effects on the financial wellbeing of those who practice it.
In this article, you will be introduced to four ways that will help you to avoid emotional spending.
Identify your triggers
If you find yourself falling victim to emotional spending, then it is likely that you can identify certain situations, places, or people who elicit the negative emotions that lead to you to spend money to make yourself feel better again.
In order to get this under control, it is important to take some time to introspect and understand why these stimuli have such control over you. Additionally, once armed with this information, you can try to avoid these triggers or consciously stop yourself from spending when getting triggered.
Avoid saving credit card information on online vendors
A lot of emotional spending happens over the Internet. This is made even easier if you already have your payment information saved on the websites you frequent. Make it a point to delete this information to help reduce emotional spending.
"Emotional spending" is the spending of money to cope with negative feelings.
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Remember the 24 hour rule
Another major tool is the 24 hour buffer period. If you feel like a certain purchase will help you feel better, then ensure you hold off for at least 24 hours. If, after that time period has elapsed, you still want the item, then go ahead and purchase it.
That way you can be sure you are not acting on a whim and your finances will not bear the brunt of unnecessary expenses.
Mindfulness refers to the practice of training the mind to stay focused on the present in order to best process and deal with the events in one’s life. The methods people use to practice mindfulness include meditation, practicing gratitude as well as applying positive thinking when confronted with undesirable situations.
These practices have been connected to an increased quality of life, higher self-esteem as well as better interpersonal relationships. Practicing mindfulness is likely to help you stay in control of your emotions and may help you channel them in positive ways that are better for you in the long run.