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Reasons We Overspend

Going with the crowd.

We are influenced everyday by the decisions of those around us. Studies demonstrate that we act against reason or common sense when in the presence of a group. Failing at a simple task could be laughable but we are susceptible to financial faux pas if we aren’t mindful of our budget and why we spend money.

Stress or managing feelings.

Spending money can be a cover-up for stress or difficult feelings. Tune into the why behind your spending. Not sure if this is you? Write down everything you spend money on for one week. This will show patterns in your spending.

Not using a budget.

A budget is a tool to illuminate where our money goes. Reframe the idea to budgeting as a stress reliever. When you know what you have, spending, or even the occasional splurge, is okay when you can see the big picture.

Boredom or procrastination.

Stumped on an assignment? Putting off a project that’s due? Mindlessly browsing or shopping can be a sign that you’re avoiding focus.

Confusing “wants” and “needs.”

Is a laptop an educational requirement? Likely. Do you need the latest version, costing an extravagant amount? No. That is where a need becomes a want. It is easy to step over the line, telling ourselves we need something when a basic version will do. At least until you're making more money as a young professional!

Rewarding ourselves.

Did you just turn in a big paper? Finish your taxes or achieve a milestone in your life? It is great to treat ourselves but don’t mistake a well deserved reward for an excuse to purchase something.

Compulsive shopping addiction.

Sometimes a larger issue is at the heart of overspending. Compulsive shopping and shopping binges are best addressed with a professional.