Your heart swells, your eyes widen. You’ve been looking for a pair of shoes just like these for ages; ever since the last time you walked away from a similar pair, you’ve been owned by the desire to have these shoes.
Hold on now? Do you need the shoes?
Need, who cares about need… you WANT those shoes.
And so out comes your credit card and $260 later your savings just got tapped by the Impulse Monkey.
You get home, you look at your new red shoes and you want to kick yourself for not having the good sense to walk away. You’re trying to save for a house, and that’s $260 you didn’t have to spend. Where was your self-control?
If you think you might be an impulse shopper, the first step to controlling it is monitoring your urges. It’ll only take a couple of weeks of thoughtful note-taking to give you a good insight on how and why you shop.
Get yourself a small notebook, keep it handy, and every time you get an urge to shop, practical or not, write it down. Note where you were, what you wanted to buy or did buy, and how you felt. Note every time the Impulse Monkey squawks at a prize, whether it grabs you online, at a store, or when you’re flipping through a flyer. No matter how often that Impulse Monkey chatters in your ear, make a note of it.
Whether you buy the item or not, keep track of the Monkey. Many times our urges are subconscious and we can’t control our spending if we aren’t aware of it.
Once you’ve determined that you have a problem, you’ll then be able to take steps to get the Impulse Monkey off your back.