According to a 2015 survey, the American Psychological Association (APA) reported 72% of Americans felt some level of stress about money. In these uncertain times, that level is surely even higher. Unfortunately, stress about money can affect a person’s family life, work performance, and even their health.
Although financial stress may be legitimate, especially if you’ve suffered a loss of income, worrying about money doesn’t help solve the situation. It often makes it worse. If you’re experiencing money stress, the following are a few tips to help you manage your emotions and get your anxiety about money under control.
Quit Comparing Yourself to Others
Instagram and Facebook have curated accounts. People we know —and sometimes we don’t know— post their best photos and try to show their best sides. We don’t see their adversities and limitations. Instead, we might feel as if we are struggling while others are living the good life.
All too often, we forget to appreciate what we do have. We see what others have and want that instead. This desire to keep up and compare lives with others can lead to stress about our finances. The best thing to do is to forget about what others have and concentrate on the positives in your life. Be kinder to yourself.
Face Your Finances
Resist the temptation to hide your head in the sand. The more you know about your finances, the better you will feel. Take an assertive stance with your budget. You can take control by learning about ways to save and grow your money. You can’t learn to negotiate with credit card companies to lower your interest rates if you don’t know how much you owe. Take a thorough and comprehensive look at the money you have and where it goes.
Discuss Your Financial Difficulties
Many people would rather talk about their health than discuss their personal money matters. However, keeping financial needs secret only adds to the anxiety. Rather than treating financial struggles as a situation, it’s often treated as a personal defect attached to a stigma. Talking about financial challenges can open up avenues of assistance. It can also help others realize their own struggles.
Talking about money stress can come in the form of whatever you’re comfortable with. You can ask advice from someone who you know is good with money. A financial advisor can also help you address stress and finances. A counselor or psychologist can also provide you with an objective ear for you to speak with.
If money stress is affecting you and your family’s basic needs, you can turn to government assistance and non-profits. Although you may not need any assistance in the long run, just knowing where to find it and that they are available can give you peace of mind.
Stress and Money
Money does not make you happy. Although it does impact your quality of life, money isn’t what makes you feel happiness. If that were true, everyone in the financially rich 1% would always be happy, and that is not the case! Taking control of your finances, being honest about money, and understanding money’s limitations can curb your anxiety about money.