Shopping Addiction – A Solution

Speaker 1: If your closet is overloaded with clothes that still have tags on, or if you’ve converted an entire bedroom to a walk-in wardrobe, you might be a shop-a-holic Speaker 2: Do you have an uncontrollable urge to shop or can’t resist a sale, even if you know you can’t afford it? Speaker 3: Could you go without buying clothes for an entire year? There’s a question for you

Speaker 4: One Aussie woman decided that her addiction to buying more items to stuff into her already overcrowded wardrobe was ruining her life Speaker 5: It’s a challenge many would find near impossible, but one woman says that she’s giving up shopping for an entire year Speaker 6: From shopaholic to money saving money saving crusader, over spender to under spender Jill Chivers has done what many men and women would find impossible Speaker 7: How did you do it? Jill: Medication

Speaker 8: For self–confessed shopaholic, Jill Chivers, her addiction was so strong she was forced to convert her bedroom into a wardrobe Jill: The urge to splurge can be very, very seductive and the cycle will go something like, I don’t feel good, or there’s an emotional button that’s being pushed, I go shopping Then that emotional button gets pushed again, and so on, and so on, until you do something to break that cycle Speaker 7: When did you, I suppose, realize that you had an addiction? Jill: It was late last year I had been in the United States and come back with a range of things that I’d bought, and I looked at them all, and thought, these are all gorgeous, and I didn’t need any of them

I had a wardrobe, literally, stuffed to the gills with wonderful clothing that I had enjoyed shopping for, that I like to wear, and yet I was still continuing to add to that wardrobe That’s really a form of insanity I had an awareness one day coming back from doing the grocery shopping, and thought I need to have a better relationship to shopping I need to wear more of what I already have I shopped as a way of rewarding myself

As a way of saying, I worked really hard I’ve done something really challenging I’ve achieved something I’ll treat myself I had a sense that I didn’t have a healthy relationship to shopping

I knew I wanted to make a change to the way that I went shopping and my relationship to consumption When you go into your wardrobe and you feel that 80% or 90% of it is unwearable, that starts to have a dreadful effect on your self esteem and your confidence Shopping is not just shopping Shopping fulfills many needs There are social needs

We go shopping with friends, sisters, mothers, daughters Shopping also hits emotional buttons Many women have different reasons that they shop They shop when they’re angry They shop when they’re bored

They shop when they feel bad They shop when they feel good We get into a bit of a cycle where we don’t feel good, we go shopping We feel bad again, it just fuels the cycle It has an effect on relationships

It has an effect on identity and self esteem It has very devastating and some real effects on women’s lives Speaker 1: How did you realize you were a shopaholic? Jill: Poverty Speaker 1: Poverty Jill: I also knew there was an emotional element to my shopping, but I didn’t understand what it was

The emotional side has been the hardest part, really fronting up to that and not running away from it because if you become exposed, you become exposed to judgment and people don’t understand you I really wanted something to change I didn’t just want a year off from clothes shopping I wanted something to be different at the end of the year Speaker 1: The whole idea was to reboot your urge to shop

Jill: Delete the old files, put in some new files I have so many clothes and I love clothes shopping It’s a contact sport It’s a hobby I’ve elevated it into an art form

One of the other things that the year did for me was it opened my eyes to the broader landscape of consumption, and shopping, and the reasons that we shop It caused me to want to help other women as well Speaker 9: There’s no catch for not shopping Jill: There is a safety net There are things that you can do to help ease your way through, what might seem like, a painful year

I now run a 12 month course for other women who want to take a year off from clothes shopping They don’t want it to be a year of going without, who wants that They want it to be an inspiring and supportive year They want to feel better about themselves Our 12 month program, we have a huge emphasis on how to understand what works for you

How to use what you have It’s amazing how much more women can get out of existing wardrobe even if they’re a little bit bored with them It’s easy to spice them up Shop in your wardrobe Those clothes got there because of a reason

Start using them, stop playing around with them A lot of times we play it safe in our wardrobe There’s a lot of hidden mileage and magic in our wardrobe if we can get in there and use what we got We also address financial aspects, emotional and psychological reasons that women shop, we do something on how to organize your wardrobe You don’t wear clothes you can't see

It’s an online program You get a weekly listen into your inbox You get support You get a community A year without clothes shopping is not a punishment

It can be an enjoyable and enriching year Speaker 11: Jill has gained more by buying less Jill: It’s about learning to work with what you've got Here we have 12 items of clothing that make over 50 outfits Speaker 12: Jill believes these steps helped her on her journey

Firstly, identifying her problem then not constantly thinking about shopping Instead of spending, spend your time doing more enriching activates Jill: Instead of going shopping, start a list of the things that you love to do that fulfill the spirit and make you feel good about living and being alive Do those things instead of going shopping When you feel the urge to splurge go and do one of those things

Instead of meeting in a shopping center and then doing some retail therapy, I would actually sit and talk, and the time was really about being together rather than, where can we go to get a great deal? As a matter of fact, that happened with my husband Instead of going for a coffee and then charging off to see what was in the shop, I would actually sit and spend more time with him That’s a huge benefit when you’re concentrating on the person you’re with rather than what deal am I missing out on You can slay your shopping dragon The point is, if I can do it, anybody can do it

Rather than spending my life, I’m living it The thing about clothes shopping, it can be not only enjoyable, but really enlightening

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