Almost two thirds (62 percent) of Americans are stressed about money. It is one of the leading triggers of stress and many people are continuously looking for ways to better deal with their stress. With 78 percent of U.S workers living paycheck to paycheck, there is the constant worry about meeting financial obligations and matching them to your income. Many Americans struggle with building up savings while others struggle with repaying debt or securing that all important deposit for a mortgage. Regardless of the source of your financial worries, it can quickly affect other parts of your life including your physical and emotional health. Take a look at these tips to help you deal with financial stress.
Identify your stressors
Once you have identified the specific item that your financial stress is stemming from, you can make a plan to tackle it. Not only does this allow you to be in control of the situation but by having a plan in place, you may feel less stressed as you progress. Your plan can come in the form of establishing a budget or simply taking a look at your overall financial health and where you can cut unnecessary expenses. By identifying the underlying issue, you can avoid any unsavoury side effects. Often when people are stressed, it can take a toll on other parts of your life. Approximately 12 percent of Americans skipped a doctor’s visit due to financial hardship, as found in a report done by the American Psychological Association in 2015.
Realize what you can control
Most times, your financial stress is stemming from either an income or expense aspect or a combination of both. Perhaps your income is inadequate to cover your expenses or a particular expense is taking most of your income each month. Almost 48 percent of Americans said that their expenses equalled or exceeded their income, becoming their source of stress. The key in these situations is to identify what you can do, what you have control over. If you are struggling with debt and its impact on your credit score, you can consider the various ways to remove bad debts from your credit report.
If you are after increased income, then consider ways you can bump your income. The path that you take to achieve this is completely dependent on your choices and preferences. You could start a side business with an idea of yours, pursue a higher paying career or look at your expenses and find ones to cut. However, while you identify and take steps regarding what you can change, find the inner peace to accept that some things you may not be able to.
Find the positive
Finding the positive things in your life on a regular basis can shift your attention away from your stressors. While it is by no means a fix for your financial issues, diverting attention to a positive aspect can help improve your emotional state and stress you currently feel. Sometimes it can be as simple as looking at your situation in a different light. If you are repaying debt, focus on your progress so far rather than the overall picture. Take a minute to appreciate the little steps you have made so far. Perhaps you are now able to pay an extra $200 towards your debt each money by cutting expenses. Take the time to appreciate that and realize you are moving in the right direction. By doing that, you can face your debts with a renewed sense of hope and determination!
Finally, if you feel like stress is overpowering your well being, consider speaking to a therapist or psychiatrist and pursuing alternative treatments such as exercise, meditation and regulating your sleep and diet. It is important to have support if you need it and with their help, you can rectify your financial situation, calm and hopeful.