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During the holidays, especially in December, people invest in gifts, food, decorations, travels, and many other things. However, in some cases, the amount of money spent can be a little too much. Post-holiday debt can take months or even years to be repaid which can affect your mental and physical health.
Anyone can feel very stressed about their finances at any time of the year. However, many people can experience anxiety after the winter holidays as well.
With the Covid-19 pandemic, many have been facing huge financial problems than ever due to unemployment, high medical costs, or struggling businesses. These situations can trigger a big deal of anxiety which can escalate into a panic attack even more if you live in a lower-income household.
According to the American Psychological Association’s Stress in America Survey done in 2020, 64 percent of American adults show that “money is a significant source of stress in their life.” Also, 52 percent of the adults “say they have experienced negative financial impacts due to the pandemic.”
If you are worried about your financial situation keep reading as our tips can help you deal with money issues. No matter whether you are in a relationship, in college, expecting a baby, or in any other event this article is for you.
You will learn how to overcome the financial crises at home which can help alleviate your stress about money.
You don’t have to be an expert in finances or math to improve your money management skills. Therefore, we have put together great recommendations to help you overcome financial problems. Also, these tips can simply help calm down your anxiety about money.
We will explain the financial anxiety definition and why many people experience it.
What is financial anxiety and its causes?
Also called money stress, it is tension caused by financial hardship or even being afraid to face financial problems. Although it can be a normal reaction, sometimes it can get worse.
Unfortunately, facing lots of debt or not having enough money to pay for basic needs can affect relationships, career, health, or more. However, people who have a good financial status can worry about their finances as well.
You do not have to face financial problems to feel anxious. Many people are better off but still can face nervousness about the future or feel like they do not have enough money.
To help you understand this topic, financial anxiety can be caused by:
- not being able to pay the bills
- fear of losing the house, business, or car
- a new life event such as divorce, pregnancy, kids going to college, etc
- post-holidays debt
- unstable job
- lack of liquid assets
- Covid-pandemic which has affected people’s financial situation
- the way a partner deals with money
- Parents or relatives financially enabling
Financial stress can affect your life negatively. If you experience panic attacks or anxiety they can get worse when financial issues arise. We will discuss how these issues can impact an individual and the people around them.
How financial problems can affect panic attacks and life in general
Being unable to pay the next bill or fear that we have not saved enough money can be a huge problem. Not only these situations can escalate to health problems, drug addiction/alcoholism, and depression but also increased panic attacks.
Feeling anxious about money can cause palpitations, depression, nervousness, numbness, and other symptoms. As a result, long-term anxiety can trigger panic disorders.
Ignoring the problem or failing in finding a solution may lead to more tension which can cause stress-related health conditions such as heart problems, diabetes, depression, among others.
Not only financial problems affect adults in many ways but also children and their performance at school. Also, these issues are one of the tops reasons couples separate. Work productivity, parenting, marriage, spirituality, and social life are only some of the areas affected by financial anxiety.
Although money doesn’t buy happiness the lack of it or money worries can affect every aspect of your life. Do you feel anxious about money even though you are doing great? We will discuss this topic to help you find out why.
Why do I worry about money when I have enough
According to Experian, one of the USA credit Bureaus, along with TransUnion and Equifax, people not only waste money but also tend to hoard.
As we mentioned earlier, worries about money can also be experienced even by individuals who are better off. They may feel the need to save more funds or even earn more. Or they can experience anxiety about spending money.
These thoughts can make them feel anxious and make their panic attacks worse.
The COVID pandemic can trigger those anxieties and fears which can affect the mood, mental stability, and general health. Therefore, people who have a business can experience a big deal of anxiety as well.
If you have enough money saved and pay your debts on time you don’t have to worry unless you lose your job or other unforeseen situation. The suggestions below can help you beat the stress about money and how to prevent any major issues.
How to deal with financial stress no matter your situation
As we previously mentioned, anxiety about money is not only for those who are broke. Anyone can experience anxiety about their finances.
These helpful recommendations can help you cope with money issues and anxieties which can reduce your anxiety:
No matter how bad things are, remember that every problem has a solution. Practice breathing exercises and other techniques to help you relax. This will help you clear your mind.
Find the root of your financial problems
In order for you to deal with your debt, you may want to find out how it has affected your credit and the amount of money you owe. This will help identify the root of the problem. Speak to a debt counselor so they can develop a customized plan and tell you what is the next step to follow.
Always check your account via internet banking or review your paper statements if you don’t have an online service.
A good way to deal with your financial anxieties is to know where your money is going. This can give you an idea of how money is managed and a way to stop spending money unnecessarily.
If you do not have any debt, try to find out why you feel worried about your finances. You may be afraid to lose your job or may think that may not have saved enough. In this case, make sure you are saving money and cut unnecessary expenses.
Downgrade or cancel some services
Do you have cable TV or other services but you don’t use it as much? How about a residential phone line? Check whether any monthly subscriptions can be suspended temporarily or canceled.
For example, you can subscribe to an online stream service that is affordable. It is essential to opt-out of unused services which will help you save some bucks.
If you hold an unstable job weigh your options
Get ready in the event you are laid off. Prepare your resume to start looking for a new position. Don’t make big purchases. Also, find out if you are going to receive severance and how much. Be ready by planning ahead of time.
Sell unwanted or unused items
To help you get some money you can put your old stuff on sale on an auction site or even a garage sale. You may be surprised by what you can find in the basement or closet.
Talk to your children about your financial situation
If you have teenagers or young adults explain what is going on but remain positive. If they are the overspenders have an honest conversation telling them the consequences such as reducing their monthly allowance.
Although parents want the best for their children, it is crucial not to enable them. If they need money encourage them to do home chores so they can earn it. Also, they can find a part-time job to supplement their expenditures and that will help relieve your financial stress.
They will have a sense of responsibility and accountability which help them develop their money management skills.
How to avoid financial issues
Even if you pay your debt on time and your finances are in order you may want to know how to avoid money troubles in the future.
Making smart financial decisions and adopting conscious money management can help you not only save money but also lots of headaches.
Those who are looking to build good credit or improve it may want to learn how to prevent making bad decisions that can escalate into financial problems. Keep in mind that these issues can increase tension and can worsen panic attacks. Enjoying a good credit history and finances means better sleep and quality of life.
You do not have to be a millionaire to start taking care of your finances. Like our health, knowing how your budget every month is very important. It can help you discover any unusual pattern or problem on time before the situation gets worse.
No matter how much you earn or spend, these useful tips can be a tool to help you manage your finances efficiently and avoid stressful money issues:
Don’t apply for many credit cards in one shot
Do you want to build your credit? Many banks have credit card offers for students which can help getting started. Get only a card and make small transactions. Remember that the more you use a credit card the higher the debt and interest. Use moderation when using one.
Don’t live beyond your means
Unfortunately, many people spend more than they should which creates severe financial issues to the point of triggering panic attacks and anxiety.
The best solution is to stop overspending. Focus on your budget so you know how much is going out and compare it with the amount of money coming in.
As a rule of thumb don’t try to “keep up with the Joneses”. Always live within your budget and forget what other people think.
Every time you want to spend on something, think about the future. Keep in mind that even when it comes to credit you still have to repay it. Therefore, the “buy now pay letter” line can come with a lot of bad delayed surprises.
Don’t buy it if you don’t need it
Have you come across something nice that you really want to buy? I used to fall into this trap that at the end of the day it added up to the end of month payment.
Then I realized that being honest with yourself can help avoid buying unnecessarily. While it is great to indulge myself with some shopping being wise also helps you save some money. `
Before going shopping always ask yourself why you want to have it. Many people buy because they are bored or feeling down. And some regret making the transition when they realize the transaction was just a waste of money.
Principal payments can help payoff sooner
If you have extra money you may want to use it to reduce your debt. You can apply mortgage principal payments to help reduce the balance and pay it off quicker.
Depending on your bank you can make them via online banking or by sending a written request to your bank. Because bank policies differ in every institution, it is best to contact a representative if you need help.
Open an emergency account
Saving extra funds can help you during hard times. Reducing unnecessary expenses is a smart way to start. Any extra funds earned can be deposited into an account that you can use in unforeseen circumstances such as job loss, illness, and other emergencies.
Always monitor your accounts
Checking your bank and credit card accounts a couple of days per week can help your financial anxiety. Knowing what is going on in your accounts can help you make smart decisions that can save you money.
Did you earn some money selling old stuff or got a tax refund? Put this money away for a rainy day. This will help you deal with any issues in the future.
Learn beauty techniques to save you money
You don’t have enough money to go to a spa? It is never too late to take care of your skin at home. You don’t have to spend lots of money to look great. Find natural skin or hair care treatments using what you have in the kitchen.
Check the internet and some Youtube videos on how to make face masks, body creams, and even hair treatments. You will realize how much you save having fun making your own products and treatments.
Bring your lunch to work
There is nothing like a homemade meal. Preparing healthy lunches and snacks to eat at work is a great way to save money.
If you spend $6-$10 on lunch each day for 5 days that’s a whopping $120-$200 per month! If your schedule is very hectic, take one day a week to focus on preparing the meals.
Depending on your diet, buy fruits, lean proteins, and veggies to cook your lunches. If you can eat nuts you can add them to your salad or eat them alone as a snack.
Also, you can prepare your dinners in advance so you do not have to order food.
Pay off there credit card balance every month
A great way to limit unnecessary purchases is to pay off whatever you owe on the credit card every cycle. This can help you save money on interests and force you to use your credit card only in an emergency. This will help you reduce your anxiety over money and worry thoughts.
What to do when your spouse or partner has a spending problem
No relationship is perfect. Every couple will face challenges. But what to do when one of the partners has an overspending issue?
Some individuals spend lots of money on hobbies or any other reasons without telling their other halves until they are confronted. On the other hand, many couples know their partner’s overspending but don’t know what to do.
Believe it or not, there is a solution for this. It depends on how you approach the situation. Whether it is you or your partner the overspender, know that the sooner you find a solution the better.
Keep in mind that it takes two to sit down and talk about your problems before it is too late. These recommendations can help you and your partner solve the situation effectively.
Confront your significant other without judging
This situation can make you very upset and anxious. However, even if your partner has been hiding their spending it is best not to judge them. Feeling angry about this is understandable but fighting can make things worse.
Use the right words
Telling your partner “You have ruined our finances” will not resolve anything. It is best to say instead “We need to limit our spending to reduce debt and save more money”.
Use your bank statements to show them how misusing the money can get in the way to reach financial goals. Find out effective ways to solve this situation together.
Determine how much is enough to spend
Sit down and talk about the amount of money you can use every month without hurting the budget. For example, if each of you can spend $100 every month make sure you don’t spend more than that.
Remind yourselves that every decision that has to do with the money you make may affect you the rest of your lives. Therefore, using a budget can help use your money wisely.
Find out why your loved one overspend
Every problem has a root and finding out why your partner spends too much money is essential to find a solution. They may feel that going on a shopping spree can improve their mood or can be addicted to shopping.
Make them feel comfortable so they can open up. Keep in mind that trust is important to have an honest conversation to help solve the issue.
Speak to a financial counselor or therapist
If you are unable to convince your spouse it is best to talk to a professional. They can explain to your other half how they can improve their money managing skills and look for better ways to fight unnecessary overspending.
Financial anxiety can be fought with small changes. Create the habit of tracking your account and look for any spending patterns. Keeping your finances in order can help you remain calm and stay focused.
Resolving money issues takes patience, teamwork, and skills. Dealing with financial anxiety the smart way can help you set yourself free from excessive debt. You don’t have to have lots of money to focus on your financial situation.
Knowing how you are spending your money every month can help you determine if you should reduce your spending or make any important changes. Following our recommendations can help you beat nervousness and worries about money.
We hope our article “How to successfully overcome financial anxiety” can be a great help to your and your loved ones.
B.L.A. is a web developer/designer and writer who enjoys country life in western Pennsylvania, USA along with her husband C.C.A, who is also a contributor, co-author, and editor.
Check out their other blog SmartAroundyourWrist.com.