Some strategies to help prevent spending include paying for things in cash, keeping track of spending habits, waiting 20 minutes before buying anything and filling the need to spend with other activities. Frequent overspending can lead to both financial and emotional problems.
People typically spend more money when paying for things with debit or credit cards, so limit spending by shopping only with cash. Paying with plastic can make spending seem more abstract, but tangible cash creates a greater awareness of exactly how much money is being spent.
Whether it's on the computer, a smartphone app or just a piece of paper, keeping track of expenses can also help rein them in. The act of recording expenses helps lend more significance to each purchase and can help determine how necessary each one really is. Keeping records can also help contribute to an overall attitude of financial awareness and saving.
Before making an impulse purchase, step away from it and take about 20 minutes to really consider the item's value. The immediate urge to buy an item typically has little basis in logic, and a quick trip around the store can often help reassess the actual need for a purchase.
An urge to spend can often be the result of something lacking in life. Keeping a busy schedule, whether through increased social connections, hobbies or clubs, can help cut down on spending money.