Can Shopping be used as a Health Therapy?

Read time 4 minutes

This blog is another opportunity to feel grateful. Thank you, dear Universe, you continue to bless me with recovery and health.

One of my fondest memories was when my grandfather used to take me out to ‘get lost.

Shopping can be used as a therapy.

As kids, those fun moments created lifetime memories. Innovative games, goodies, and accompanying parents for shopping. I mean though it was a daily affair to visit the same grocery market, those tiny lanes were so confusing. The memories of walking through those small stores and streets are still so fresh.

A decade later, as an undergrad, my friends and I would spend hours on the shopping streets. It felt so fulfilled getting a hang of the latest trends at a bargain.

Even today a lot of my fascination is based on limited offers and deals. It feels great to fill my cart with goodies and instantly feel alive and joyful. At times, the joy derived feels momentary but the very next moment: – who cares?

Almost all of us have such memorable moments and for many of us shopping is so much more than what we buy, isn’t it?

In 2016 I was diagnosed with a rare disease, Isaacs’ Syndrome. Isaacs’ is a neuromuscular health condition that stems from muscle hyperactivity. My lift post-diagnosis underwent a drastic change. In the process, I also discovered that I had Lyme disease. Lyme is a bacterial illness that gets transmitted through ticks. I was also accompanied by Glaucoma. Glaucoma is an eye-related disease that damages the optic nerves. And Membranous Glomerulonephritis is a progressive kidney disease.

Easy, tough, good, or bad times, all come in an instant.

For months together, I was bedridden and vulnerable to health complications. I had stabbing pain in my calves and felt very weak with no energy and got back to sleep more often. I had unimaginable symptoms that almost made me almost immobile.

Above all, fun is such a critical part of us. It regulates stress and fuels the brain with happiness. And what is better than buying a treat for a thrill by mood?

I often lay on the bed and remembered that saying, when the going gets tough, the tough go shopping.

The smell of something new is so quirky. The need of the hour for me was to derive the happiness quotient.

I discovered that it’s all the little things that create all the difference. As little as receiving a message from Amazon that a package was sitting on the doorstep.

An instant thought went to those brightly lit colorful displays at the stores. It is possessing and can take one away from the reality of sadness. The idea fuels imagination and is so positively distracting.

I explored shopping as an effective form of therapy. The Internet has opened new possibilities for online shopping. Especially for people who are stationed at home and are unable to reach a store due to physical problems. It felt a safer option considering my health complications.

In no time I had access to the products that supported my everyday challenges. My noise-cancellation headphones to Iyengar Yoga props, all were mood boosters. Managing the ingredients of a balanced and healthy meal became easy.

It comforted me with the least physical tiredness. It was a great option to avoid crowds and billing counters and receive the products at home. I enjoyed the doorway to choose my wish list products with the help of customer reviews.

During difficult times, the excitement and anticipation of receiving packages is beyond words.

The sensory experience of shopping

Spending considerable time and having settled with my conditions, I started stepping out. Visiting physical stores provided a much-needed escape from the hospital or home environment. The sight, sound, and smell took me a step further towards healing. Browsing products and interacting with friendly store staff brought moments of normalcy.

Consumerism has its criticism for finding real happiness. However, it brought me health benefits.

Building a Supportive Community of Togetherness

Of all the things I loved doing with my friends was shopping. It was more of any event. It unbelievably became one of the most cherished bonding activities.

The experience helped reduce feelings of isolation and provided a sense of belonging.

To sum up

The encompassing nature of a rare disease and the way it disrupts life can ignite a wide range of emotions. Among many, I found that incorporating the technique of shopping works wonders.

It was more like a sport for me.

There were many positive impacts of shopping while battling my rare disease. It instantly elevated my mood with a release of dopamine. Also, had psychological perks and acted as a pleasurable visual distraction. It generated a sense of bonding between friends and gave easy access to my requirements, delivered at home.

I encourage my readers to explore the therapeutic benefits of shopping. At times, when life gets overwhelming, we all need a little strategy called ‘pick-me-up’. For many of us, that pick-me-up can come in the form of taking shopping as a therapy. Though it is momentary however one can find his sources of comfort and happiness.

Having said that, the effectiveness of shopping therapy varies from person to person.

It is important to be mindful when engaged in any form of therapy to promote well-being.


The views expressed above in this article are the author’s own and do not represent any kind of medical advice.

Subscribe to our blog

Subscribe to our blog

You cannot copy content of this page