Are You Addicted to Buying Stuff?

Patrick
  • By Patrick
  • Are you addicted to buying stuff?  I know that I can be and at times in my life I most definitely have been addicted to spending money.  In almost every case the addiction to spending is foolish and the purchases end up being regretful.  You end up with junk that you just bought in order to give yourself a small emotional boost.

    A surprising number of people in recovery can and do fall victim to this pattern.  They are not used to having money and they are certainly not used to spending it on things other than drugs and alcohol.  So it is easy to get started off on the wrong foot financially when you are in early recovery from addiction.

    Some people will get into recovery and they will stop using drugs and start working a steady job.  The money starts rolling in and they give themselves permission to spend a bit of it, even though they might be deeply in debt due to their addiction or have other financial obligations that need to be met.

    I spent *how* much!
    Creative Commons License photo credit: Funkdooby

    Now the problem is not in the fact that they allowed themselves to spend a bit.  The problem is that they go from there and let their financial life unravel and they never look back until they are so deep into debt and struggling hard just to stay afloat. This is no way to live in recovery and you do not want to get into this situation.

    Debt is slavery and it sucks.  The peace of mind that you can get from having all of your bills paid and being responsible in recovery is absolutely priceless.  It is worth it to plan ahead and think about this now so that you do not end up going down the wrong road.

    One basic principle that you have to grab a hold of is that your happiness is not tied to the stuff you own or the money you spend. You can prove this to yourself by not buying anything other than groceries for the next 30 days and keep a daily journal of your happiness level.  Then allow yourself to buy junk every day for a week and keep a journal of your happiness then, too.  You will see that you are just as happy when you are not buying anything.  We play a game in our minds and we tell ourselves that we will be happy IF we buy this or that….but it’s not really true.  The happiness is fleeting.  True happiness does not come from impulse purchases.  Trite, but true.

    Go ahead….take a 30 day trial and prove it to yourself. You can be happy and content without buying meaningless junk all the time.

    Sure, you get a small boost of happiness when you allow yourself to make an impulse buy.  But quickly after that, the happiness fades.  Seek a more permanent solution for your happiness in recovery.  Do not allow yourself to fall into this financial trap.  The never ending cycle of debt and useless junk is not worth it.

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