Let’s face it, there’s no better feeling for us girls than the one we get after we’ve treated ourselves to a new outfit, especially when it’s for a special occasion we’ve been looking forward to. And that’s fine ! Everybody deserves to spoil themselves now and again, but what happens when it becomes less of a treat and more of a destructive habit.

As a student I know only too well what it’s like when loan day is approaching us, thinking up wish lists in our heads, taking mental pictures of expensive dresses we can’t yet afford. It’s an exciting time for any young adult. But what happens when we run out of money and the instant buzz we have been experiencing, the feel good therapy I like to call ‘shopping’, is no longer possible because our bank balance is reading £0.00. Well most of us live off beans on toast for a couple of months and wait patiently for our next money delivery. However, some people can’t settle for living off tinned goodness and the thought of rummaging through a bargain bin is a very unrealistic one.

There are those who don’t find it easy pulling the plug on their spending and can’t help but delve straight into their overdrafts and beyond. This is when things can become dangerous. It takes will power to say no to buying something we really fancy. You either have it or you don’t. If you don’t then you could be a victim of shopoholism . Super spending can lead to debt, and the more you buy the more it increases. I’ve seen it happen to fellow students who are forever lending  money from whoever is willing to part with it. The odd £20 here then the odd £5 there, but the more you do it the harder it becomes to pay back. So why keep spending ? Why not take more care of your finances ? The answer is simple. People with shopoholism simply cannot physically stop spending. It’s the same way drug addicts are addicted to drugs. Except shopping is their drug. But a student lifestyle certainly doesn’t last forever. It’s easy to forget that pretty much everything we’re spending will one day have to be all paid back, and then we really will have no choice but cut down on costly sprees.

In order to look after our student finances and ourselves, we need to organise allowances. I find that by working out a reasonable amount to spend each week, it is much easier to manage the finances. In order for this to work you have to be strict. If you overspend one week you need to do less spending the next week. By doing this you are guaranteed not to be left short towards the end of term. I learned the hard way that being skint can be avoided, and shopoholism can be overcome.