Avoid These 4 Common Spending Triggers

2 min read
May 05, 2023

Avoid These 4 Common Spending Triggers

So you’ve made a budget, but unnecessary spending is still a struggle. If this sounds like you, don’t be discouraged. Finding out what your spending triggers are and how to avoid them can help you to change your habits. Take a look at the four common spending triggers below.


Who doesn’t like a good bargain? When it comes to something you need or plan to buy soon, it’s smart to keep an eye out for a deal. But beware. Sales can also tempt you to purchase items that you wouldn’t typically consider in the first place. Find something for $70 that normally costs $100? Stop, take a breath, and determine whether or not you really need it. It might feel like you’d be saving $30. But in reality, you’d still be spending $70.


A lot of us might find ourselves on shopping websites or heading out to the mall in our free time. While that’s completely normal and even necessary at times, pay attention to how often you shop and try to find other ways to fill your free time. Go for a walk or hike, try cooking something new, work on a hobby, reconnect with family and friends, or find a new series to watch.


Shopping is often an emotional response to our feelings. Buying something new can temporarily increase feelings of happiness and joy while decreasing feelings of anger, stress, or sadness. Find other methods to help guide you through these emotions, like calling a friend or taking some time to meditate.

The Joneses

Peer pressure and other social influences (including social media, group pressure, and people-pleasing) can play a major role in our spending habits. When social pressure causes you to disregard your budget and make unnecessary purchases, it can become a habit. Before making a spur-of-the-moment purchase, use the “48-hour rule” to determine whether it’s something you really need. That is, when you see something you’d like to buy, allow at least two days to go by before making a final decision on whether or not to buy it. This will give you time to make sure you don’t make a purchase based on boredom or emotions.