Financial stress is one of THE big modern day worries. I don’t think there’s anyone who hasn’t laid awake at night worrying about some aspect of their financial situation – I know I certainly have (big time!)… There is a clear link between money issues & mental health problems.
I’m all about improving mental health from all areas – there is no point having a super clean diet & lifestyle if you are ignoring your mounting debt or your over-spending. The underlying stress builds up in the background – causing an undercurrent of stress & anxiety which can even manifest as physical issues in our body. This is not conducive to overall health & wellbeing!
Some tips that have helped me deal with financial stress are as follows –
- Don’t ignore the problem! It may seem easier to stick your head in the sand & pretend things aren’t happening – but believe me, it is a lot easier once you acknowledge the problem & take small, manageable steps to sorting it out.
- Talk to someone – be it a friend, family member or someone impartial. There are lots of independent financial advice services & resources about such as HERE.
- Open all bills & correspondence – once you have a clear idea of the extent of any debt etc you will be in a better position to get help. A pile of unopened bills is sure to cause stress. Fear of the unknown is often far worse than the reality.
- Educate yourself about money. It’s not complicated & many of us don’t have a basic financial education. Make learning about managing your money fun. Some resources I recommend are – any of Dave Ramsey’s books, a great book about money & how it relates to self worth by Nancy Levin, Tony Robbins’ book Money. There are also tons of podcasts on the topic for learning on the go.
- Use a budget. I’ve written about the importance of budgets HERE. They’re not fun but they are so helpful in managing your money.
- Track your spending – another important one, especially if you are on a tight budget. I know this is important but I’ll admit I am so resistant to it. It is so easy to overspend especially in the digital money age. And overspending definitely equals more stress!
- Look at other ways to earn extra money – be it selling unwanted household goods & clothes at car boot sales, on ebay or Facebook marketplace or offering your services if you have some free time (dog walking, car washing, grass cutting etc).
- Set yourself small achievable goals – whether it be to save an extra £10 a week or to increase your income each month. There are lots of free printable trackers online to make your goals fun!
- Try to keep your lifestyle as healthy as possible – this will increase your ability to deal with stressful situations. It goes without saying – try to avoid excess alcohol etc as a way to cope.
- And finally, don’t be ashamed of having money problems. It is more common than you realise – over 1.5 million people in England have money & mental health problems.
Leave me a comment if you have any other ideas to add or if you have any personal experience of financial stress which you would like to share!