- Financial stress affects our social, mental and physical wellbeing hence the need to know how to manage our finances.
- Coping with financial stress is not something you have to do alone. Remember to ask for help and talk about your struggles.
We all know that our finances stress us out, we don’t need anyone to tell us that. But what we often don’t know, is exactly how to avoid or reduce the stress of bearing financial challenges.
Deployment, pay reduction, contract terminations, retrenchment, redundancy, these are just but a few ways that the pandemic has had a hand in exerting financial strain on most individuals.
Financial stress affects our social, mental and physical wellbeing hence the need to know how to manage our finances.
1. Acknowledge where the problem is.
This has to be the first step to solving any problem. Once you know what the problem is you’ll know how to solve it and how to avoid future occurrence of the same. Burying your head in the sand or going on a credit card fueled spending spree will only make things worse. Whether you are overdue on a payment or facing a time without income, the hardest but most necessary step is accepting the problem exists.
Only then can you figure out what to do to fix it.
2. Feel free to talk about the issue.
A problem shared is a problem solved. One of the major factors that keep people in debt is the inability to discuss money issues with friends and family. While it’s understandable that you can’t talk about sensitive matters with everyone I’m sure you have someone in mind that can help you out either financially or with word of advice on how to go about with the matter.
Coping with financial stress is not something you have to do alone. Remember to ask for help and talk about your struggles.
Being the first to admit you are having problems might help someone else open up to you about their own. Make sure you tell those close to you so they know why you can’t go out to do activities that cost money. Tell them you are more than happy to go to the park or hang out doing free stuff if that’s okay with them.
3. Be mindful of your well being.
Make sure you get regular exercise, a 20-minute walk in the fresh air will do wonders for your mental state. We’ll talk about the effects of financial stress in the next blog.
Remember that your finances are already a problem. Don’t worsen the situation by spending the little you have on masseuses and fancy dates. There are several ways to take care of yourself without breaking a bank or digging deep into your pockets.
4. Adjust your lifestyle.
For you to comfortably sustain yourself with what’s left in your bank account, a change in your lifestyle is mandatory. While it might not be an easy one, it’s essential.
The logic with this is pretty simple, cutting down your expenditure gives you more time to come up with income gaining ideas.
5. What’s the worst that can happen?
What’s your worst case scenario?
Do everything within your means to make sure it doesn’t lead to that.
This may sound a little negative but knowing how dire things could get is a great way to keep things in check. Depending on the resources you have available your worst case scenario could mean having to ask for help from government agencies or it could just mean having to rein in spending for a few months.
6. What assets do you have?
What assets do you have if things go from worse to worst? This is where you sit down and figure out all of the resources you have available to help you through the tough times ahead.
It could be a piece of land you have somewhere, your car, your electronics anything to get you cash.
Work out what you have available in savings and cash accounts. These funds should be your first source of emergency income. Only after you have accounted for savings should you look at your assets.
Remember that you are not alone on this and things could have been worse.