The primary emotional component of impulse purchase is distress, which is often what causes it. This may involve problems with self-worth, worry, depression, or even boredom. Anytime you make an unplanned purchase, it is an impulsive buy. It’s an impulse purchase if you haven’t budgeted for it beforehand.
What makes Impulsive buying so bad?
Your money and future financial prospects may suffer if you make an impulsive buy. First off, using a credit card to pay the charge can make it more difficult to settle your statement at the end of the month. Yes, you have the option to pay only the minimum sum due, however doing so will result in interest charges. You risk spiralling into debt if you aren’t careful.
And to make matters worse, you risk incurring fines and perhaps even a penalty interest rate if you fail to make that credit card payment. That only causes temporary harm. Your credit score will suffer over time, which may reduce your access to loans in the future.
1. Avoid being Tempted
What is the most effective means of preventing an impulse buy? Avoid shops that offer the products you want to buy! Especially those that offer “buy now, pay later” choices! This can entail skipping the mall or disabling your preferred purchasing websites.
You’re sure to be drawn to them if you’re continually in the presence of bright, new things. Avoid succumbing to temptation so you can be sure you’re just buying necessities.
2. Postpone your Purchases
Give yourself a full day to consider a purchase. Move physically away from your phone or laptop and abandon the things in your basket. Having a mental checklist you can use to determine whether an item you want to buy is something you truly need or whether purchasing it would damage you more than help.
If you still desire it after 24 hours, you’ve also had time to consider how it will fit into your budget, according to a qualified financial counsellor and coach at Illuminate Financial. You may lessen some of the impulse by doing this.
3. Give yourself the Go-Ahead to Spend
You should always keep to your budget. However, it’s also crucial to include some leisure spending money. Give yourself a line item with your name on it in the budget for your leisure expenditures.
Depending on your circumstances, this may cost $10 or $100 each month. Make sure it is inexpensive for your budget and appropriate.
If anything catches your attention the next time you’re browsing the mall, all you have to do is check your fun money fund. It’s now guilt-free to shop! That reward or treat isn’t an impulsive purchase any more because you’ve previously planned a little sum of money for it.
4. Switch to Cash from Credit Cards
Given that handing out cash is psychologically more difficult than using a credit card, people tend to spend less when they do so. Furthermore, you will think twice before handing over your wallet to a cashier if you just have a small amount of money in it. Simply leave your credit card at home if it’s tough for you not to use it.
5. Apply the Waiting Period Principle
Make it a rule that you must allow yourself time to consider any purchases that cost more than a particular amount, such as $50 or $100. Depending on your predisposition to indulge, it may be anywhere from one hour to a month. But the more time you can wait, the better.
A decent rule of thumb is to “sleep on it” for at least 24 hours before deciding whether or not to make the purchase. That gives you enough time for your temptation to subside so you can approach the purchase with clarity if you actually need it.
Take a picture of the item and the price if you find anything when shopping in a physical store that you feel you can’t live without. After the waiting period has passed, you may go back to the item and even use the details to compare shop online.
6. Stick to your Budget
Make a budget and a shopping list, and follow them every time you go shopping. It’s true that saying than doing. But it is effective and will ultimately be profitable. Well, it could be challenging to stay under a strict spending plan that doesn’t allow for wishes. There is thus no harm in setting aside a little sum of money each month for a treat.
7. Make shopping more Difficult
We essentially have access to shopping around-the-clock and from the convenience of our own homes. This makes it much more difficult to rein in spending impulses. Create some challenges or checkpoints for yourself to help you browse more carefully. Remove any shopping applications from your phone so you have to visit the store’s website instead. Erasing the automatically saved credit card data from your purchasing websites. These actions will offer you additional time to consider your purchase.
8. Set a Spending-Free Goal for yourself
Make a personal goal for yourself to reduce your impulsive spending for a specified period of time. You might, for instance:
- For a month, buy nothing except necessities.
- Instead of going out to dine, prepare meals at home daily for a month.
- 60 days without purchasing new clothing
Before making a purchase that is more expensive than a particular quantity of money, wait at least 24 hours.
Making no-spend days into a game will help you better understand your spending triggers, such as shopping online for clothes or eating out too regularly. This will make it simpler for you to maintain no-spend days. If eliminating all unnecessary spending seems like too much of a challenge, pick just a few problematic categories like designer shoes or pricey drinks and eliminate them temporarily.
9. Remind yourself of your Objectives
You probably have several financial objectives. That may be early retirement or setting up money for a significant vacation. If you are not spending as planned, you won’t be able to accomplish these goals.
Yes, occasionally paying a little more might not seem like a huge problem. But every impulsive purchase you make negates all of your diligent work. It will take you that much longer to pay off debt or accumulate an emergency fund. Are you prepared to give up these objectives in exchange for a brief period of shopping bliss?
10. Avoid Shopping while you’re Feeling Down
Don’t allow your emotions dictate your purchasing habits we recently spoke about this, but it bears repeating! You can be having a fantastic day and decide to buy something on the spur of the moment. Or perhaps you’re having a terrible day and convince yourself that you deserve something good or that buying this stuff would cheer you up.
We’ve all been there before. It is quite simple to do. How then can it be fixed? Avoid making any purchases when your emotions are bouncing around, whether you’re happy or attempting to cheer yourself up.