Some of us feel financial pressure from time to time. According to a Northwestern Mutual survey, money was the most common source of stress for 44% of Americans.
If you’re worried about money, the most important thing is not to get anxious. As long as you stay calm and put in the work, you’ll ultimately overcome financial difficulties.
To begin, use this guide to enable you to end your financial concerns.
What is financial strain?
Financial strain isn’t simply an issue of money. It’s when your financial concerns begin to affect your emotional and physical wellbeing.
While earning enough to pay the bills can be a challenge, loss of purpose over time often results in a downward spiral of anxiety. After awhile, feelings of depression and hopelessness may occur. You may also develop panic attacks.
Financial hardship can even lead to post-traumatic stress disorder, substance abuse, and severe grief in severe cases.
Our recommendation is that you avoid letting this happen. Make changes now to protect your health.
8 Tips for someone feeling financial strain
If you’re in debt but looking for a way out, use the steps outlined here. You might feel better mentally and economically by doing so.
1. Don’t be too hard on yourself
We all encounter rough patches in life. Standing down for yourself will only make you feel worse. This can also result in unpleasant emotions such as disappointed pride, self-doubt, anxiety, and depression which are very difficult to reverse.
Instead of dwelling on your mistakes and failures, focus on planning and working on the future. You can do so by outlining your goals and aims. You can even create your own personal development plan.
2. Take a mental break from your financial strain
Do not pay your bills, student loan bills, or bank statements for several days. Simply ignore your finances so you can better enjoy yourself.
If you feel that social media is affecting your spending or self-esteem, it may be a good idea to take a break as well.
Stress management is important for improving your well-being. Do some yoga, meditate, or take a bubble bath to relieve stress. By doing things like this, you allow your brain to rest from worrying.
3. Create a plan
Creating a financial plan has many parts. But if you’re under financial stress, the first step is to identify which bills require attention first, like credit cards. Then design a system to put your finances where it needs to be.
This also means two things: budgeting and cutting back excess spending.
To start a budget, list all your monthly expenses, and then determine how much money you will need to cover them. Next, check your total monthly income to see where you can save money.
There are many ways to budget. You can divide your spending into categories where you allocate a particular percentage of your income to each. Or you can try the escrow account strategy, in which you save cash for particular items in separate envelopes.
Always pay at least the minimum amount each month on your credit cards. If you can’t pay off the full amount of credit card debt, always make the minimum payment. And don’t skip student loan, car, or mortgage payments, either.
Budgeting can help you reduce your day-to-day expenses. Are you spending money on expensive outings or entertainment? See if you can reduce these costs, but make sure to always have some money left over.
4. Get an accountability partner
The burden of financial debt can be alleviated more easily if you are on your own. Having a supportive companion can greatly help.
A business partner shares your objectives and will help you on the way to success. You may brainstorm methods to reach your goals, check-in with one another often, or ask for assistance if you need help.
Having human support can help you meet your aims by keeping you accountable.
5. Seek financial counseling
A financial counselor is different from a compliance partner. Rather than holding you responsible for the things you buy, a counselor’s goal is to help you make a solid financial plan for the future.
Do you need a financial advisor? They are a great resource for helping you reach your financial goals.
Working with a financial advisor can help free you of monetary stress. In addition, you can establish a fund that will enable you to live comfortably in your retirement years.
Operation Hope is an excellent example of a great financial counseling program focused on financial stability and inclusion. They collaborate with banks, corporations, municipal agencies, and community organizations to provide HOPE at no cost to the client.
6. Look into a side gig
You may want to look into a part-time job if money is scarce. This could help lighten your burden and make you feel more relaxed financially.
Fortunately, there are numerous ways to make some extra income, many of which do not even require you to leave the house. You could try working as a virtual assistant, freelance writer, or tutor. You can also do activities like ridesharing or grocery shopping away from home.
In a survey that looked at people with side hustles, female participants earned an average of $507 more per month than men. This extra money could make a big difference if you’re living paycheck to paycheck.
7. Try out therapy
Do you feel dejected no matter what you do? Therapy might be beneficial. Therapy is seeing increased use, as 40.2 million Americans sought mental health treatment in 2019.
A therapist can’t help with your financial issues, but they can express your mental and emotional feelings about money. They may also help you with changing your behaviors that cause you to be in financial difficulty.
We know that you are wondering how that service works. Many employers provide it as part of their employee benefits, so it won’t have to be an additional out-of-pocket expense.
8. Work your plan
These are all great ideas and shortcuts, but only if you strictly follow the plans. Creating a budget on a sheet of paper looks neat. You have to do it. Follow along as best as you can, as every penny counts.
This requires a great deal of self-discipline, and having an accountability buddy really helps.
Overcome your financial strain
Use these suggestions to get rid of financial stress once and for all. With your newfound energy, you will begin each day feeling good about your future. It can also help you leave behind the past and move toward the future.
Want additional assistance? Consider taking a complimentary personal finance class. You’ve got this!