I can list so many things I love about working from home but there are downsides, too. One is that I am online for the majority of the day and I can check eBay or Amazon or Etsy anytime I want. And seeing that I can never say no to all things cute or pretty, this is not good for my financial health. So I came up with ways to stop myself from clicking ADD TO CART and CHECKOUT. I hope that these ways to curb online shopping help you, too. These are tried and tested methods, I should add.
1. Get Creative
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Whenever you notice yourself clicking through items for sale, get up, and do something else. I suggest getting creative; bake, sew, paint, cook, draw. Tackling a project sure has helped me save a lot of money. It helps that my sewing table is right beside my desk.
2. Ask Someone's Opinion
Let's say you're crushing on a pair of shoes and you're THIS close to buying them. Before you click BUY, send the link to your boyfriend or best friend. Ask them if they think they're right for you. Ask them for their honest opinion. If they tell you why you should not purchase the item or items, do not question their opinion. Unless you really need to buy said items.
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Shopping bans seldom work. Believe me, I know. So if you can't stop yourself from buying anything, give yourself a monthly budget that you can spend wholly for shopping. I suggest a budget that is a very small fraction of your monthly salary. This way, you will learn to save up if you want to buy something particularly expensive.
4. Another Time
Say you saw something online that you think you cannot live without. But if you buy it, you will eat nothing but air for several days. One of the effective ways to curb online shopping is to leave the purchase for another time. What works for me is checking if I still feel the same about the item after three weeks. Often, by the time I check on the item again, I no longer feel strongly about it.
5. Compare to Mall Items
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Okay, you might think that going to the mall to look at shoes or dresses or bags will make you a bigger fan of online shopping but you need to do this if you want to save money. Say there is an item online that you like. Do not buy it right away. What you can do is check out stores in your city that might offer something similar. Who knows, you might just be able to find something else better and cheaper.
6. Time Yourself
I do this when I find myself browsing eBay instead of working. I give myself 5 minutes to take a look at the items. After that, I tell myself that I should be making money instead of wasting it.
7. Write Everything down
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One of the ways to curb online shopping is to write everything that you have purchased. This can be a monthly record. I make sure to include shipping charges so that I know exactly how much I've spent shopping online.
One of the ways to curb online shopping is to make a wishlist. This helps because you somehow think that you don't have to buy anything you see online right away. What you do is bookmark the link or use a wishlist website. If you still want the items you have included after some time, you may consider buying them. A wishlist is also a great tool for the people in your life to know what you want for your birthday or Christmas. Win-win, right?
I use these ways to curb online shopping and I must say that they are helpful. Not when I see cute Oxford shoes but that's the only exception. Now please tell me if you have more effective tips for controlling online shopping. I'd love to hear your ideas!
Top Photo Credit: uzbeckistan