Are You A Shopaholic?
What Is A Shopaholic
What To Do If You Are A Shopaholic

What Is A Shopaholic?

Shopaholics are individuals who can't control their spending. For those people, buying something is like a spring tonic - it makes them feel great.

Well the truth is, buying something new - a new car, a new dress, a new home - makes us all feel great. The difference between an ordinary spender and a spendaholic is that for a spendaholic, one purchase leads to another and the thrill of buying often outweighs consideration for the consequences of overspending that follows. For spendaholics, overspending becomes an addiction, one that is very hard to overcome.

How do you know you're a shopaholic? Take this simple test.

Select the answer that best describes your situation in each question below. When you're finished, click Add Up My Points.

 Do You...  Often   Sometimes   Never 
1. Have trouble saving for something you want or need?
2. Often run your credit cards up to the limit?
3. Find yourself buying expensive gifts for those you love, even though you can't afford them?
4. When you go shopping, come home with things you didn't plan on buying?
5. Often buy things and then return them to the store the next day?
6. Buy things you never use?
7. Spend a lot of time watching the shopping channel on TV?
8. Spend a lot of time Internet shopping?
9. Buy something and then feel guilty about it?
10. Go out to buy one thing and come home with a complete set of accessories, as well
11. Find yourself justifying your purchases to your partner, your family, your friends or yourself?
12. See that your debt is creeping up slowly every month?
13. Find yourself unable to resist the latest technology, fashions, or fad?
14. Look forward with pleasure and anticipation to your next shopping trip?
15. Sneak purchases into the house and hide them, hoping no one will notice?
16. Try to stay within budget, but always fall short of your goal?
17. Find that your spending behavior is making you or someone close to you unhappy?
18. Buy something to cheer yourself up or calm yourself down?
19. Come from a family where adults would give you gifts to make up for time they didn't spend with you?
20. Give in to your children's demands for purchases, rather than make a scene by saying "no"?
 Click Add Up My Points To See What Your Score Means Below

 What Your Total Score means:

If your Total Score is: Over 50 Points: You may have a serious over-spending problem.

If your Total Score is: 25 to 50 Points: You need to be very careful. You could be headed towards becoming a Shopaholic.

If your total Score is: Less Than 25 Points: Relax. You seldom over-spend.

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What To Do If You Are A Shopaholic

Everyone overspends once in a while. It's especially easy to do at Christmas and on vacation. The shopaholic is different. Shopaholics can't control his or her spending. Spendaholics get a thrill out of each new purchase, and it's the thrill they go for, not the actual item the purchase represents.

If you suspect you're a shopaholic, cheer up, there's help available. Many cities have an organization called “Debtor's Anonymous.” Debtor's Anonymous is a fellowship of individuals who want to recover from compulsive overspending.

They follow a Twelve Step Program of Recovery meeting on a regular basis to share support, strength and hope and assist each other in following the Twelve Step Program. Does this program work? If you follow the Twelve Steps to the best of your ability, it can and will work for you. In fact, health professionals dealing with addictions have said that those individuals who have joined a Twelve Step fellowship and work the program have the best chances for long-term recover over all other programs, including expensive recovery centers. Most professional mental health centers for the treatment of various addictions include in their program involvement in the Twelve Step program appropriate for the addiction.

To find a branch of Debtor's Anonymous near you, look in your phone book under “Debtor's Anonymous.” Or look up their web site: If you're not sure DA is for you, this national website will tell you a lot about the program. In addition to this national website, the DA fellowships of many states and major cities have their own web pages, so it pays to do a web search to see what's out there.

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