You would think that with a sluggish economy, saving money would make Americans happy, but it’s actually spending that can put a smile on their faces.

This new survey echoes a philosophy that I have recently learned. It basically says that in order to feel good, we must feel good. Make sense?

It's new age 'Law of Attraction' stuff, that simply restates the idea 'You get what you gave'. So, if I am feeling bad, I am going to attract more bad feelings. If I feel good, I am going to attract more good feelings.

I believe in this stuff because as soon as I started feeling great about my career in radio, as soon as I knew, without a shadow of a doubt, that I would have a rewarding, prosperous fun career that I loved, that is exactly what I received.

So, instead of wallowing in bad news, going shopping could snap us out of the blues by allowing us to enjoy purchasing something that will make us feel better. And I'm not the only one who believes this.

A new survey of 1,000 people from Ebates has found that 52% of people in the US shop to feel better. It’s a phenomenon known as “retail therapy.” Broken down by gender, 64% of women shop to boost their spirits, while 40% of men do so.

What exactly causes us to open our wallets in the hopes of improving our mood? About 19% say retail therapy helps after a tough day at work, while just shy of 15% claim they do it after receiving bad news and 12% like to flex their purchasing power following a fight with a significant other.

Most Popular Items Women Buy for Retail Therapy

Clothes – 58%
Food - 35%
Shoes – 32%
Accessories – 29%
Books/magazines – 29%

Most Popular Items Men Buy for Retail Therapy

Food – 28%
Electronics – 27%
Music/movies – 27%
Clothes – 22%
Games/toys – 18%

Of course, just because consumers are willing to spend doesn’t mean they aren’t out to find a good deal in the process. About 81% say getting a good deal during retail therapy also makes them feel better.


[Business Wire]