The Shopping Monster

by CaReese

She attacks just about every time I walk into a store. She wants everything she sees. She never has enough. She’s a genius when it comes to rationalizing any purchase. She’s the Shopping Monster and I battled her again today.

Today, I allowed myself to shop. And there I encountered the shopping monster. She tried to steer me toward all kinds of purchases, using crafty lines like:

“You’ll save more if you buy the gift set. It’s a better deal.”

“This is a limited edition. If you don’t get it now, you won’t be able to get it later.”

“It’s just a few dollars.”

“You may as well get the matching soap.”

“This is a good price. You’d better stock up”

She’s pretty convincing, that Shopping Monster. She nearly talked me into spending another $40 on things I don’t really need!

For the most part, I was able to fend her off, though I did get an extra hand soap. Nothing major.

Though I am leaving the mall with new purchases, I did shop with purpose. So often I walk into a store with no real expectations, no real concept of what I want. I just stroll around, going from store to store, waiting for inspiration to strike.

That’s exactly what the store managers and sales associates want you to do. That’s where the Shopping Monster works her evil magic. Because inspiration will strike, and it will get you to buy way more than you need.

One way to guard against this is to know ahead of time exactly what you need. Consult your closet and inventory before going to the store so you don’t duplicate.

Another way is to set a budget. Knowing exactly how much you want to spend helps to curb add-on purchases.

It’s hard, but it is possible to keep the Shopping Monster under control. It takes determination and some self talk (in my case, a lot f self talk… out loud), but it can be done. I had to argue it out with the Shopping Monster today:

“I don’t really need the matching soap”

“Two is enough. I really don’t need more than that”

“This is not my last ever shopping opportunity. There will be other deals and other shopping trips.”

So at the end of my shopping trip, I left with:

  • body cream (2)*
  • body cream, unscented (2)*
  • aromatherapy body lotion
  • hand soaps (3)
  • socks (1)
  • foundation **

* 1 was for my aunt

** purchased on behalf of my aunt

This shopping trip was successful because I didn’t stockpile, even though I was getting a great deal. I knew what I wanted to buy, and I pretty much stuck to those items.

Take that, Shopping Monster!

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