Feeling overwhelmed with financial stress? Mental health and financial health are more interconnected than you may realise. Irrespective of the circumstances, we’re here to lend a helping hand and help you gain control of your finances.
If you’re anxious about your finances, you’re not the only one. Many of us, from all walks of life, have dealt with or are dealing with financial stress especially during this pandemic. Be it loss of employment, mounting debt, unexpected medical expenses, or all these factors at once, we’ve all been affected, more than we’ve let on.
Take the First Step: Talk to Someone
When it comes to monetary problems, we often tend to bottle everything up, trying to fight this battle alone. You might think twice about sharing any financial blunders or oversights, fearing reprimanding from family or friends. However, bottling it up will only make your problems seem more alarming. By sharing your current situation, you’ll likely find someone who is far more understanding and has also been through the same. You’ll realise just talking about it will make your problems less intimidating. So, go ahead, get the support you need.
Go easy on yourself. One fool-proof way to combat stress is through meditation, breathwork and yoga. This will ensure you won’t feel as overwhelmed by your finances in the future. Relaxing your body and mind will help reduce stress and clear your mind too!
Take Stock Of Your Finances
If you’re having trouble facing the current state of your finances, leaving your Credit Card statement unopened or avoiding phone calls from banks or creditors is not the solution. In the long run, you’ll surely find yourself regretting these actions.
Start with using an app to keep track of your spending every month. By taking stock of your finances, you’ll have a clean slate to plan your financial future while also sorting out your finances. As daunting as it may seem, it is quite easy to manage once you get started. Pay your bills on time – this can’t be stressed enough!
Additional Reading: Easy Hacks To Master Your Money This Year
3 Steps To Financial Freedom
Once you’ve taken stock of your finances and curbed unnecessary spending, there are 3 steps you can consider – one, find alternative sources of income, two – marginally lower your monthly spending, and three – stick to a budget that suits your needs. It is now more important than ever to set a limit on how much you can spend on a daily or monthly basis. Be it for groceries or your impromptu shopping sprees, setting a limit on your debit and Credit Card transactions will ensure you do not overspend on unnecessary things. Go through your expenses and make sure you are not spending more than you earn.
Additional Reading: Personal Finance 101: Save More Money Without Even Realising It
Budgeting That Works For You
Rein in your day-to-day spending. It’s standard financial advice, and for good reason! One thing that makes managing finances a breeze is a solid budget! Although budgeting may not have worked for you earlier, there are many ways you can leverage this hack in a simple, easy to understand way. Allot spend limits for every expense like groceries, food, rent and necessary household bills like electricity, water, internet, transportation costs and fuel. Also factor in savings and other non-essential expenses. This is a nice foundation for you to get ahead in your financial planning. Sticking to a budget will ensure you stay optimistic and motivated to see your financial plan through.
Additional Reading: Why You Should Colour-Code Your Budget
Take Emergency Expenses Into Account
If you aren’t prepared for a rainy day, even the smallest emergency expense could leave you reeling from anxiety. Earmark a small portion of your income for emergency expenses only. Be it in a savings account, a fixed deposit, or a recurring deposit.
When you’re troubled with money worries, it’s difficult to steer yourself away it. Stop ignoring the looming uncertainties, take a step back and re-evaluate. Don’t try to rebuild your budget all at once, from scratch. Like everything else, managing your finances starts one step at a time. Start small! Although dealing with financial stress can be triggering, do not be discouraged. Take a break from the constant worrying, it will surely show you a clear trajectory to move forward.
Now that you know what the next steps are for a mentally and financially secure future, also be financially prepared for uncertainties that may come knocking.