Freeing myself from shopping addiction - a no spend 2020

Hi all, I'm new around here. I plan on keeping this as a log for my own accountability throughout the year. Every January I lurk here, read the new year challenges, get myself all full of optimism for a frugal year ahead, then promptly end up on the grabbit section. Before I know it, all bets are off. I'm shopping because 'ooh look what a bargain!'. Idiot.

This year it changes.

I've come to realise that I have a genuine problem with shopping. In particular clothes, makeup etc but I also overbuy food and anything else really. I don't really have any hobbies as such so it's something to do. I don't have expensive taste but I buy lots. Pretty much everyday.
I love bargain hunting, get a real buzz from it. I just like acquiring the things, at the moment mostly clothes, more than I can wear really. I don't get any time to myself with my kids so it (and my not so secret anymore smoking) is my little selfish outlet.

Life got very expensive this year for various reasons and it seems that at times when I'm struggling money wise I'm more likely to shop. Like a sort of "f*** it' attitude, self sabotage, whatever you want to call it. It stops now.

I'm making some returns today in order to start the new year off with as clean a slate as possible. Then my aim is to buy nothing new or unnecessary for the year.

So here's my line in the sand.

2020 is the year I kick my negative habits. No buying. No smoking.

I will get out of my overdraft.
I will pay off my one credit account.
I will be responsible with my money.

Here goes.....:beer: Happy New Year!!


  • PurplebonniePurplebonnie Forumite
    137 Posts
    Fifth Anniversary 100 Posts
    I am very similar. I get a buzz from bargain hunting, whether I need something or not. My food stocks are overflowing and when I get a new ‘interest’ I buy all the things/gadgets that I think I may need. It has to stop for me too. I don’t need anymore stuff!
    Debt 04/11/22 - £0.00
    Emergency Fund Goal - £1000/£106.89
    Living Fund 1 Year - £2520/£640
    Travel Pot - £2000/£350
    Regular Saving Fund £4800/£400
  • MidsHollieMidsHollie Forumite
    292 Posts
    100 Posts Second Anniversary Name Dropper
    Hi there Notbuyingit!

    I'm also considering not buying anything in 2020 because of a problem with spending. My problem seems a bit different to yours though - I panic buy clothes for certain occasions (eg 3 pairs of shoes for a wedding abroad this year, which I couldn't return as I was out of the window by the time I got home and an entire new wardrobe for a holiday to a more conservative country where I decided I needed to cover up). I've provisionally drafted up some rules to help me stay on track, which included no home d!cor items, no new books, no new electronics, no jewellery, no multiples of non essential food items (I'm allowing myself to buy one bar of chocolate but I can't buy three!). Have you thought about setting some rules or boundaries to help you stay on track?

    True LBM, December 2019 = £32934. Current Debt = £12762. 1% Challenge = 61.1%. #51 3-6 Month EF Challenge = £1200/£6000

  • beanieloubeanielou Forumite
    82.9K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Mortgage-free Glee! Name Dropper
    Happy shiny new diary :)
    Lou~ Debt free Wanabe No 55 DF 03/03/14.
    **Credit card debt free 30/06/10~**
    MFW. Finally mortgage free February 2021****
    "A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of" Jane Austen in Mansfield Park.
    ***Fall down seven times,stand up eight*** ~~Japanese proverb.
    It starts with you, it starts from now. *** It is ok to be me.***
    ***Keep plodding***
    Out of debt, out of danger. ***Be the difference.***
  • doingitanywaydoingitanyway Forumite
    8K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper Mortgage-free Glee!
    Have you tried NSDs?
    I have found they keep my spending in line and reset my desire to spend.
    Good luck with your diary
    If you have built castles in the air, your work should not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.

    Solicitor/survey savings 300/1700
    Emergency fund 0/1000
    Buffer fund 0/200
  • savingholmessavingholmes Forumite
    23.1K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Photogenic
    I can relate to the buzz of shopping. I now get my food shop delivered most of the time to avoid getting side tracked by bargains. It is still a struggle though. I do think - that in some ways the same thing that drove us to shop can be used as drive to achieve something different. What are you hoping will be different by the end of your year of no unnecessary shopping?
    Target 1) Prioritise health & social connection 2) Write regularly 42,993/70,000 words Book 2 and 10,787/70,000 Priestess book 3a) Get to £10K EF/Savings Now £4,508 3b) £1.6K Savings for DD Car (Achieved) 4) MFW starting at £201999 Nov 21 with 264 250 payments to go. Now £192,959 5) Mortgage neutral progress via pension £1,887 invested since Nov 21 6) Declutter 7) Invest in fun and frolics - and not just future self! 8) CC Debt free April 22 (now stay that way!!)
  • Good luck! I find it's easier to do something positive than not do something negative - so is there anything you can look forward to rather than shopping? So rather than 'I didn't buy X', you can say 'I reached my goal of X no-spend days' or 'I walked X steps' or 'I had a nice bath' or 'I sketched something'.
  • vintagegalvintagegal Forumite
    162 Posts
    100 Posts
    Good luck Notbuyingit, I am a shopaholic too and would love to join you this year in not shopping.

    January is hard when the sales are on!
    I've been tracking my clothes wearing using an app and it is astonishing how little you wear some things. I've picked three items that I am determined to get 30 wears from this year.. have considered how to style them differently.
    Please do continue to post and we will encourage each other!
    Fashion on the Ration 2020 - 5/66 spent
  • foxglovesfoxgloves Forumite
    9.4K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper
    I am now debt & mortgage free, but I've made no secret in my own dfw diary of how much of a big silly spender I used to be! Also, I've mentioned a couple of times how some of my most unloved clothes purchases were very often things I'd found on the sale rail. I used to see that the price had been reduced & instantly think it was a bargain. Wrong! If I had been visiting that store to see if a particular dress I wanted was in the sale, found that it was, & it was a lot cheaper than the original price, then THAT is a bargain. What I was doing was too much 'Oh this top used to cost £65 and now it's only £30 so wow, what a great reduction, I'll have it!'
    A lot of these sale rail purchases ended up being worn a lot less than my other stuff because no thought or planning had gone into what they would go with, whether they were actually a garment I even needed & I sometimes even used to ignore the colour! For instance, I bought a navy blue dress with some other blue patterning on it because it had a big chunk of money knocked off. Yes, it fitted & I liked the style, but why did I overlook the fact that I look cr*p in navy blue? I was just carried away with the mistaken belief that I had found an ace bargain. I hadn't! I'd found an ok dress in a colour I didn't like which I wore just a few times & gave to a charity shop. I can't tell you how many of these false bargains have cluttered my wardrobe over the Spendy Decades before I became a reformed character & discovered I actually LIKE budgeting!
    "Begin doing what you want to do now. We are not living in eternity. We have only the moment, sparkling like a star in our hand and melting like a snowflake".
    Sir Francis Bacon 1561 - 1626 (Philosopher & statesman)
  • vintagegalvintagegal Forumite
    162 Posts
    100 Posts
    Hi Notbuyingit, are you doing OK?
    Fashion on the Ration 2020 - 5/66 spent
This discussion has been closed.
Latest MSE News and Guides

Check your Clubcard vouchers

Use our trick to extend them

MSE News

Preparing for summer

What MoneySaving things can you do now to get ready?

MSE Forum

Hot Diamonds 40% off code

Including already-reduced outlet stock

MSE Deals