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Fashion: Are you an emotional shopper?

 by Mani O'Brien
 published on Thursday, April 20, 2006


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It's tough to admit that you're a shopping addict. Shopping for basic necessities is one thing, but shopping can be used as an outlet for people to cope with stress, sadness and anger. At the same time, some people shop to celebrate or because they are in a good mood. Such behavior could do a lot of damage to your wallet. Take our quiz to decide if you need to keep your spending habits in check.

1. Number of times you've gone shopping during the past month:
a) 3-4 times per week
b) Once
c) 3-4 times total

2. If you had all of the money you've spent on whatever you decided to splurge on during the past month, you'd have:
a) Nothing at all. You haven't spent money on anything besides what you need.
b) Thousands of dollars. You could probably afford to go on a nice trip or put a down payment on a new car if you had all of your money back.
c) Between $150 to $250. You like to do a little spending on yourself, but you try not to go overboard.

3. Your relationship with the sales associates at the mall is:
a) Excellent. You have regular sales associates who recognize you by name. They always take time out to show you new arrivals and ask about how your new job is going.
b) Distant. You tend to get into arguments with the sales associates at the mall because you are always edgy and stressed out when you shop. You just want to be left alone because you usually get frustrated or angry with them.
c) Fair. You recognize some associates from time to time, but you don't shop on a regular basis. You are cordial, but not necessarily friendly with them.

4. The likelihood that you would go shopping if you are bored:
a) Unlikely
b) Sometimes
c) Definitely

5. When you go shopping you tend to feel:
a) Bored. You dislike shopping and rarely do it.
b) Happy to get new things, but kind of sad to see your money go.
c) Like you're on a high -- energized, excited and happy.

6. When you shop, you buy:
a) Exactly what you walked in the store for. You don't spend time looking around at other things.
b) Way more than what you intended. You find yourself having to justify many of your purchases.
c) Possibly nothing. You browse around to see if there is anything you like. If you don't see anything, you may buy nothing at all.

7. You tend to shop because:
a) You are feeling sad or stressed out. You are also likely to shop to reward yourself for a good day.
b) You earned some extra money.
c) You absolutely have to in order to pick up something you need.


Answer key:
1. a-3, b-1, c-2
2. a-1 , b-3 , c-2
3. a-2, b-3, c-1
4. a-1 , b-2, c-3
5. a-1, b-2, c-3
6. a-1 , b-3 , c-2
7. a-3 , b-2 , c-1

7-12 points: The Non-Shopper
The idea of shopping to deal with your emotions makes you laugh because you hate shopping and avoid it if you can. To you, shopping is more of an annoyance than an emotional outlet.

13-17 points: The Smart Shopper
You're no stranger to the mall, but you try to control your spending habits. You try to spend money you have, without going overboard on [extra] unnecessary impulse buys.

18-21 points: The Passionate Shopper
You see shopping as a pick-me-up for when you're feeling stressed, sad, lonely or upset. No matter what type of mood you're in, shopping is the answer to most dilemmas. You're probably spending money on things you don't need, and might want to consider investing in a saving's account instead of that new pair of jeans.

Reach the reporter at mani.obrien@asu.edu.



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