Care about finances in a healthy way, without worry
Caring about your financial security is healthy, but worrying about it can take a toll on your mental and physical health. Here are five ways to tame financial anxiety and get it to work in your favor.
Realize that financial anxiety is normal.
If you worry about money, you are not alone. According to the American Psychological Association’s latest Stress in America survey, 72% of Americans have felt stressed about money at some point in the past month. This stress isn’t limited to Americans, either; people around the world struggle with financial anxiety.
Discuss your financial concerns with someone you trust.
Sharing some of your financial concerns with a trusted friend or family member can lighten the emotional load you’re carrying. It can also prevent you from feeling alone in managing the issue. You don’t have to share every detail about your financial situation, but do consider expressing a few key points about what is bothering you the most.
Consider working with a financial counselor.
In addition to listening to your financial concerns, a financial counselor can help you learn about money management, make sense of your credit score, manage debt and understand how money can affect relationships and self-confidence. Some financial counselors will help you build financial goals and a personalized plan for working toward them, and some can help you determine if you’re eligible for certain tax credits or public assistance programs. To make sure you are working with someone with adequate training and experience, look for a counselor certified by the Association for Financial Counseling & Planning Education. Many banks, credit unions and nonprofits like GreenPath Financial Wellness also offer reliable financial counseling.
Prioritize your mental health.
A clear mind and a calm emotional state can help you make strong financial decisions. They can also help you ease stress from your finances and other sources. Yoga, meditation and other mindfulness practices can strengthen your ability to calm yourself and push stressful thoughts to the sidelines. Working with a therapist is another way to manage anxiety and build the future you want for yourself. Also make sure you’re getting enough rest and exercise, both of which support your overall health and can help regulate your mood. Remember, good health is a valuable asset: It’s worth the extra effort to achieve it.
Find financial inspiration.
Even if you’re swimming in debt or struggling to fill an empty bank account, you are not destined to face this barrier forever. First, remember that this too shall pass. Second, find a few sources of financial inspiration that help you maintain a positive attitude about money and take steps toward improving your situation. This could be a blog that shares personal finance tips, stories of people who overcame daunting financial obstacles or even an app that helps you track how much money you’re saving each time you stick to a budget.