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Oh how we lament the loss of disposable income. Many people use shopping, or "retail therapy" to cheer themselves up; whether it's buying home goods, a hammer or a new silk blouse. How do we give ourselves this little extra boost when money is short, tight or even non-existent?
One way to do this is to learn to enjoy thrift store shopping. You can find interesting and nice tops, jackets or even sweaters and pants for a fraction of the cost of new items.
Another method is to actually take some of your old clothing to a consignment shop and get either money or store credit to buy new items.
Getting together with friends and "shopping" by looking at store fronts and enjoying the displays without actually buying anything, or limiting yourself to one or two small items can also give you the same sense of satisfaction without depleting your bank account.
Another great technique is to put a bit of money aside every time you get your paycheck. This stockpile can quickly turn into enough money to go out and be somewhat decadent, allowing you to buy a new pair of shoes or that loveseat you've been dying to curl up on.
Avoiding overspending is good for the soul. After all, if you're feeling terribly guilty about the money you spend, you will subtract enormously from the thrill of your purchase. Make your retail therapy truly therapeutic by enjoying your purchases and the fact that you've avoided negatively impacting your financial situation.
Aimee Boyle is a regular contributor to EmpowHER. She lives and writes in CT.