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Strategies to Overcome Temptation and Reduce Impulse Buying

Updated: Mar 5

Here we are in 2020. The access to spend money is at our fingertips, literally. In a Vox article, the author states that Americans use their mobile internet an average of 3.5 hours daily.

[I’m not sure I want to see the numbers since social distancing began.]

This is everyone right now! 👇

woman laying on the floor staring at her cell phone

When Apple turned our phones into proxy debit or credit cards, I’m sure they did it with consumers in mind. I mean, how sad for us that we would actually have to get out our card, input the numbers, confirm a CVV, and hit submit. The HORROR! I get it; convenience is lovely, but it can be devastating for someone who struggles to control themselves when it comes to keeping up with the Joneses.

Now, all we have to do is scan our faces. Boom, your order has been confirmed.

Here are a few tips to slow your roll when it comes to spending:

Normally, using cash instead of cards is helpful; however, in the midst of the current situation (COVID-19), that advice is on hold for the moment.

  1. No surprise here, given the intro: remove your debit and/or credit cards from Apple Pay (or whatever version Android users have - I struggle to understand those people and their phones!)

  2. To piggyback off of number one: remove your cards from Google Pay too. Those magic little numbers that appear when you get to a credit card entry box. Sneaky sneaky.

  3. Keeping with the technology theme, block the ability to order directly from your smart speakers (Alexa, Google Home, etc.). [This is definitely a good idea if you have children in your home who think they can boss Alexa around at any hour of the day. Give Alexa a break!]

  4. A little psychology here: If you have the urge to buy something, use Mel Robbin’s 5-Second Rule. The way she describes the rule, it is typically used to move you toward action. I use it in the opposite vein for spending. If I want to press SUBMIT, I instead count down (5-4-3-2-1) and ask myself if I need this item. That brief amount of time interrupts your brain just enough for you to take a look from another perspective. Is it a need or want? [PS… if you need help in the “I’m struggling to get this thing done” category, check out Mel’s book*. I loved it!]

  5. If it’s a large purchase, wait a few days before you make a final decision. Impulse buying may lead to buyer’s remorse. Then, talk it over with your family, friends, mom, or dog…, and see what they have to say about it.

It’s no secret that it is very easy for us to get our hands on almost anything within a matter of moments; our society is designed that way. It’s up to us to spend our money in a way that aligns with our values.

*affiliate link-- if you choose to purchase this book, I will receive a small commission at no expense to you

Here's to you!

Melissa Mittelstaedt

Money Coach | Accredited Financial Counselor®


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