There Are Five Types of Spenders: Which One Are You?
Accumulating material items and spending money can be fun and even addictive. Your brain releases a hormone called dopamine from the mere anticipation of buying something you want. This biological function gives you a natural high and often leads you to find reasons to justify why you “need” to make your next purchase. To help you identify the “why” behind your purchases, we are going to identify the five types of spenders. It isn’t an immediate cure for overindulging, but it is the first step to making better financial decisions.
- Treat Yourself
“I work hard so I deserve this.” Why that may be true, it is way too easy to let this become a constant excuse for frivolous spending and in turn, sinking into a continuous circle of debt. A good rule of thumb is three times: if you are using this bargaining chip more than three times per year, it is too much.
- Fear of Missing Out
Everyone wants to be included, but at what cost? The FOMO spender is someone who lets other people have substantial amount of control over when and how they spend their money. They don’t want to miss out, so they are willing to spend whatever is necessary to keep up. If this is you, you primarily operate on whims of not wanting to feel left out. We all make the occasional FOMO purchase, but if this way of thinking is controlling small things like how you dress, where you work out, and how you socialize, you may need to do some self-reflection.
Similar to comfort eating, this kind of consumer is someone who makes a purchase when they are feeling down. As mentioned above, the anticipation of making a purchase can release dopamine in your brain, which gives you those feel-good sensations, so it makes sense why people turn to shopping to soothe. Make note of when you tend to make impulse purchases. If there is a continual pattern of unnecessary spending, this is probably your spending type.
This spending style can go all the way back to the days of strolling around the mall with your friends in your teenage years. It was something to do. So, now when you get kind of bored, why not shop? It is so easy now; you don’t even have to get out of your pajamas! If this is you, try coming up with a list of distractions if you are prone to filling up your free time searching for something to spend money on.
- Bargain Shopper
“But it was on sale”, have you ever used that excuse? The bargain shopper will use this reasoning for making purchases they really don’t need. It is one thing if you need a new kitchen appliance or work clothes so you hold out for a sale, but if you frequently fall victim to junk emails promoting good deals, then you may be a bargain shopper. If you didn’t need it, it is still a waste of money, no matter how much you saved.