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New Content Added: To update the content we have added Addiction/Substance Abuse information found at the end of the Table of Contents.
On this track, we will discuss three factors that exacerbate a compulsive spender’s habits. These factors include: denial; social pressures; and contradicting personalities.
I stated to Jason, "When you spend money, you’re in fact trying to validate your own sense of worth. By buying things that have tangible value, you feel that they reflect back onto you. Does that sound right? How do you feel after you’ve finished a large shopping spree?" Jason stated, "I feel good, I feel important. But that doesn’t mean I’m dependent! I can control myself!"
Technique: Compulsive Spending Quiz
After completing the quiz, Jason had answered "often" or "sometimes" to all of the questions. On the other hand, Megan answered "never" to all of the questions. Clearly, this couple had very different views on financial issues. I asked Jason, "Do you think it is fair that Carol is the one who scrimps and sacrifices while you get to buy all these extravagant things?" Jason stated, "No, I guess it’s not fair. Since we do have combined accounts, I should maybe back down a bit." Think of your Jason and Carol. Would they benefit from comparing their "Compulsive Spending Quiz" answers?
#2 - Contradicting Spending Personalities
I stated to Megan, "Many couples tend to become polarized in their attitudes toward money. Even if you weren’t opposites when you met, eventually, you will most likely modify your habits to counterbalance each other’s behavior. This reaction may be mild or extreme, depending on how convinced you are that your husband’s actions will endanger the financial balance of your relationship. Thus, you, a mild hoarder, have become a more extreme hoarder after you met Jason."
Think of your Megan. Has he or she become a more extreme hoarder or spender after meeting with his or her partner? How would you explain this phenomenon to your client?
#3 - Social Pressure
Kelly had incorporated the social standing that her shoes had brought her into her self-esteem. Instead of using them for their practical purpose, Kelly began using them as a social status. I explained to Kelly, "There are lots of different messages today that try and convince you to fill your life with things. Today, we’re bombarded from infancy with images of all the wonderful things we can buy to transform our lives into bliss and perfection. However, all it really brings us is debt and unhappiness." Think of your Kelly. Is he or she buying items because they feel it will bring them happiness?
On this track, we discussed three factors that exacerbate a compulsive spender’s habits. These factors included: denial; social pressures; and contradicting personalities.
On the next track, we will examine the various motivations that shop-aholics have for compulsive spending. These motivations include: substituting for love and affection; gender-related motivations; and thrill seeking.
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