Spending Less, Loving More -- My Journey to Controlling Compulsive Spending

>> Saturday, January 17, 2015

Hello, my name is Jennifer and I'm a compulsive spender/debtor.

It's a big secret that some knew about me. But there are probably more people who don't know that little fact than people who do.....until now. And what may surprise you even more is that I've struggled with this for well over 20+ years. At times the compulsion would lie dormant for awhile, only to erupt with full force and heap destruction through my financial life. It's caused me heartache, stress, insomnia, and much much more. 
 
Around Thanksgiving, I was asked to be a part of a Launch Team to promote a new book called "Clutter Free" by Kathi Lipp.  I knew I had a problem with clutter....kitchen counters, kitchen table, my desk. I thought by joining this launch team, I'd get some tips on staying organized and keeping up (i.e. - stop being lazy and just put your shit away!). But as I started reading.....it became so, so much more. My eyes were really opened to the fact that clutter is a result of my spending.  Read that again -- CLUTTER IS A RESULT OF MY SPENDING.
 
As I took inventory of my hot spots - not just the kitchen table and counter, but also the garage, the laundry room, our bedroom - I became more and more convicted.  I knew I had a problem with spending, but for so long, I kept my eyes shut to the true problem and just chalked it up to laziness -- I just didn't want to put anything away.  But the truth was -- I COULDN'T PUT ANYTHING AWAY.
 
I looked at my dresser drawer that wouldn't close because of so many tshirts.  I looked at my closet and saw numerous tops -- many of the same color, same style and many of the same style, different color.  On a shelf, I saw multiple pairs of jeans.  In the laundry room (which doubles as my craft room), I saw multiple supplies -- because I'd forget what I'd have and buy more.  And let's not even talk about the books I have stacked on shelves, on the floor, in baskets just waiting to be read.
 
I decided that I really needed to take the bull by the horns and get my financial life back on track. I'm setting a bad example for my daughters - and darn it - it's time I just grew up and stopped acting so damn irresponsibly.

As I was looking for support groups online, I couldn't find one that truly spoke to me, so I thought that I would start one myself. I wanted to create a space where I could share my journey, my successes, and my failures.  I took a breath, gathered my courage, and shared my intention on my personal FB page.  And then I created
my Facebook Page - "Spending Less, Loving More". 
 

 


What amazed me the most was how many of my friends commented with love, support and encouragement.  Not one ridiculed me, criticized me, or rejected me -- as I feared.  I also got a lot of "me too!"....confirming that I am not alone with struggling with this addiction.  So many deal with this in silence because it just isn't really considered a "legitimate" addiction.
 
But we suffer too.  And we need a place to share, which is why I created my FB page.    It is my deepest hope that through my sharing, others who struggle with debt and compulsive spending will find a place to come and share and know that they are not alone.
 
Please come by, take a look, and share your story if you feel compelled. (It is my hope to eventually have a dedicated blog as well, but for now, I'll write on this page.)
 
If I only reach one person through my story, then I will be happy.


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