Financial stress is something that everyone has to deal with at some point in their lives. Whether it’s because of illness, death, or unemployment—financial stress can be overwhelming and lead to anxiety and depression. It’s important to know how to manage your finances in order to avoid these negative feelings. Here are some tips for managing financial stress during hard times:
Don’t go into panic mode
The first step to ensuring that you don’t go into panic mode is to avoid judging yourself for being in the situation you’re in. This is often easier said than done, but it’s important to remember that no one gets through life unscathed. Everyone makes mistakes and everyone has bad days, and what makes a person successful is whether or not they learn from those mistakes and move forward with their lives.
Next, try to take some deep breaths if you’re feeling stressed or overwhelmed by your financial situation. There’s nothing wrong with needing a break every now and then—in fact, this is an important part of managing your stress levels overall—so if there’s an opportunity where you can step away from things for a minute or two and relax, take it. The less stressed out you are, the better able you’ll be able to think clearly about your options moving forward.
Finally: try not to lose sleep over finances at night! It sounds silly because “money problems” are something most people don’t want on their minds at night (let alone during the day), but having enough energy available during the day can help make sure that those nights don’t become sleepless ones as well.
Find ways to increase your income
There are absolutely desperate ways to make quick cash, and many of them don’t require a lot of time or investment on your part—they just take a little creativity. Some examples include:
- Get a second job. Many people have found success in finding employment that meets their needs during the day, then working another job in the evening or on weekends (particularly if they have children).
- Start a side hustle. This is one way that many people have been able to survive financially during hard times—they find something (or several somethings) that they enjoy doing, and start making some money doing it as well.
- Look for opportunities to earn more money at work by seeking out projects that will give you an opportunity to build new skills and increase your responsibilities within the company —this can help improve morale among employees while also giving them more opportunities for growth within the organization.
Reach out to your lenders
When you have financial concerns, it’s important to reach out to your lenders. A good place to start is by getting a better understanding of your loans and how much you actually owe. You can also speak with them about options that might help reduce your payments or lower the amount that you owe. This could include refinancing, loan modifications, consolidation or just talking with someone about what services they offer in order to create a plan that works for you.
Cut back on spending
Estimate how much you spend each month on non-essential items such as entertainment, dining out, or shopping. You might be surprised at how much extra money you are spending each month on these things. Take a look at your budget and see if there is any room to cut back on the areas where you can make some changes. For example, if groceries are too expensive for your family to eat healthy food all the time, try cutting back on some products until things get better financially for your family.
Another example is if restaurants are too expensive for dinner dates with friends, set up potlucks instead so everyone can bring their favorite dish and share it with others who don’t have much money either right now.
Take care of yourself during difficult times
Get enough sleep, eat a healthy diet, exercise regularly and keep your stress levels under control. If you are struggling with financial stress, there’s no doubt that these can be very difficult things to do. But even small steps toward better self-care—a walk after dinner or an hour of reading in bed—can make a big difference in helping you feel better. If this feels overwhelming right now, don’t be afraid to reach out for help from friends or family members who will support you during this time.
It’s important to stay positive and take care of yourself during difficult times. You’ll be able to face the future with more confidence if you remain optimistic, while also taking steps toward financial recovery. Remember that your lenders will work with you on repayment plans if necessary; just make sure to ask for help early so they have time to find a solution before things get too bad.
About the Author
Monica is a passionate writer and content creator. Her interests include outdoor activities, fitness, technology, entrepreneurship and everything in between. Say hi to Monica on Twitter @monical_lee.