Psychology hack: Convert shopping therapy urge into donation urge

Chatting with one of my sisters and she remarked upon our mother’s Amazon book buying … addiction? compulsion? Orders way more books than she can or does read. Hear or read a book review that sounds good? Go order the book. Etc.

I opined that this was probably a form of shopping therapy and given our mother’s chronic health issues in recent years, probably understandable. My sister then mentioned that she just goes to the dollar store to satisfy this for very little money 🙂 but also that one of her kids seemed have a bit of a shopping therapy urge also.

I mentioned that I’d been pretty successful some years back when I hacked what felt like my own occasional shopping therapy urge (“Feeling down? Buy something!” – such an American consumer ingrained message for so many years).

What I decided to do was every time I felt that urge and couldn’t just easily talk myself out of it I’d find one of the organizations I like to support, a creative person trying to make their first album/book /comic/etc on Kickstarter, a request for help that a friend or Twitter acquaintance had shared, or similar, and make a donation instead.

I found that I got a better “feel good” feeling this way, someone benefits, and I don’t end up with more STUFF cluttering up my life. Triple Win!

I thought I’d share this hack here in case anyone else might like the idea and want to adopt it.