Can mindfulness ease shopping addiction?

In the UK, researchers are teaching compulsive shoppers to overcome addiction with mindfulness.

A UK researcher is saying shopping addiction can be cured with mindfulness.

Alison Armstrong, an advocate for sustainable consumption, took six self-confessed shopping addicts, trained them in mindfulness and has shared her results.

Eight-weeks of training, Armstrong reports, helped the out-of-control consumers to spend less. They reported feeling happier, having more self-acceptance and less anxiety.

Armstrong says shopping addiction is a real issue.

Her report claims 8-16 per cent of Britain’s adults are addicted to shopping. Though sometimes, passed off as a minor ailment, this addiction is no joke.

Shopping addicts deal with negative emotions like worry, sadness, loss, and loneliness through spending. The substantial debts they wrack up only add to their anxiety, which drives them to medicate with more shopping.

Despite the promising results, a three-month follow-up showed the volunteers had relapsed. They reported increased levels of depression and spending, though nowhere near their pre-trial levels.