A few weeks ago, I was out with a co-worker having lunch, when we got on the topic of stress and spending. We work together regularly on a particular account and at times; it can be an overwhelming and stressing situation. Especially when all cogs in the wheel aren’t running smoothly.
This particular day was one where we were in crisis management mode. After finishing lunch, we were on our way to our appointment when she cheerfully chimed in, “Did you see my new LV bag?” OH NO. You weren’t supposed to be shopping! I chided. “Well, I was stressed, I’ve wanted this bag forever, and I bought it used from consignment.” Well, I thought, might not be so bad.
Ahem. Not so bad? Right.
The next question was the logical one, “How much did you spend?”
“Oh, it was $900 but well worth it. You see the straps are sturdy and I can store all my crap. And normally these Louis Vuitton bags go for $1500-$2000.”
I swear I had a small heart attack and my mind noted, “Wow, so that’s what $900 looks like.”
The most I have spent on a purse is $600, and I justified the heck out of the purchase. I wrote a post about it last year – how my friends made fun of me for it. Rightfully so I suppose, considering how much I spent on fashion last year.
The number continued to swirl in my brain. $900. For a purse. Because she was stressed.
Can you believe 64% of women shop to improve their mood? According to a TNS Global survey conducted on behalf of Ebates.com, retail therapy – shopping to improve one’s mood – is engaged in by 52% of Americans, including 40% of men and 64% of women.
19% want to improve their mood after a bad day at work through retail therapy.
We’ve all been in this position. It’s called letting your emotions run you. I had an entire year of letting my emotions run me. The sad thing is, if we continue on the path of destruction, our debt gets higher, our desires besiege us and our lust for stuff runs rampant like a toddler at an amusement park.
That’s all it is. That shopaholic within you is a small child screaming to be let out of its cage. It’s the desire to fit in, portray ourselves as something more than we are, find meaning in life, a stress reliever, and a denial believer, call it what you will.
It’s challenging when you’re faced with a shopaholic co-worker. She likes to take lunches, she loves walking through the mall between appointments, and she must buy something each trip. Hey, I’ve been there and I was that co-worker at one point. Even though the prospect of walking through a store would initially excite me, especially when given an excuse by a co-worker, it quickly lost its euphoria.
The one thing that solves the problem? SAY NO. Say you’re on a budget. I’ve encountered more and more people who understand and accept when I state – I can’t, I’m on a budget.
You’re laughing right now, I can tell. It’s not that simple right? I can’t just say No, I’ll feel bad or god forbid, have a fear of missing out. Let me ask you this, do you really want to fear missing out on more debt?
That’s what I thought. No debt = yes please. More debt = No thank you.
There you have it, there’s your shopaholic co-worker equation.
When faced with a shopaholic co-worker, here’s my equation: Will this mean more debt? If yes, my answer is no thank you.
Do you have a shopaholic co-worker? What’s the worst damage you’ve heard she or he do?