Part 2 Financial Stress: How To Reduce It

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Year after year, personal finances are consistently mentioned as a large source of stress. A 2018 study conducted by the FINRA Foundation’s National Financial Capability Study (NFCS), “…Over half of respondents (53%) said that thinking about their finances makes them anxious and 44% said that discussing their finances is stressful”. Consequently, managing our financial stress levels is highly important. If financial stress goes unmanaged, our personal lives and relationships can be affected negatively. Often times, stress can accumulate and cause depression. So, how do you avoid anxiety about personal finances?  Natalie Goldberg stated, ” Stress is basically a disconnection from earth, a forgetting of the breath. Stress is an ignorant state. It believes that everything is an emergency. Nothing is that important. Just lie down.” Let’s have a look at what we can do to just lie down. So in this blog, we’re going to look at ways to reduce financial stress.

1. Eliminate the Unknown

Doubt and uncertainty are the fuel to the fires of stress.  With no fuel, no fire will occur. First, you must develop a realistic budget. Of course, we all need a budget! The most important part of developing a budget is taking action. Above all, stress likes the unknown. Spending plans will eliminate the unknown. As a result, you will worry less. Keep in mind, a spending plan or budget is a living document. In fact, you are living it! You must review it regularly and make adjustments as necessary. I recommend everyone sit down once a week to review the plan. Review the bills due for the upcoming week. What are my account balances? What actions should I take this week?  Once a week reviews will help to fine tune your spending plan and maximize the benefits.

2. Know Your Weaknesses

Clint Eastwood In Magnum Force said, “A man has got to know his limitations!”  Consumers also need to know their limitations! Paying too much for anything can result in stress. Also, finding so many “good deals” that you spend half your paycheck will stress you out.  If you know where you are more likely to overspend, you can take action to deal with it. Nothing wrong with spending some hard-earned money on wants. It is imperative to know where you tend to overspend and plan ahead for it. Use only cash for those items which you tend to have a weakness. When the cash is gone, you have to wait until next pay. Use a preloaded card. Limit your “weakness” purchases to that card and load it each pay. When you know your limitation, you can effectively manage them.

3. Exercise Your Body to Free Your Mind

The National Center for Biotechnology Information has concluded that only 30 minutes of moderate exercise a day will be rewarded with many benefits. These benefits include stress relief, mood improvement and an increase in mental alertness.  When you do a quick inquiry, it is easy to see the power of exercise. Exercise can be an effective shield against anxiety and stress. You can look at it as a healthy vacation of the mind from everyday tasks and concerns. It will focus you like nothing else can. Take a few moments to Google the benefits of exercise. “True enjoyment comes from activity of the mind and exercise of the body; the two are ever united.” – Whilhelm von Humboldt

Finally, do not be afraid to ask for help. If you find yourself struggling with personal finances, help is easy.  Apprisen offers free and low-cost personal financial services. Whether you are going through a financial hardship or you simply want to learn about your credit, there is a service available to meet your needs.  Talking things out with a certified Financial Specialist will go a long way to solidifying your goals and developing a plan to meet them. As a result, you reduce financial stress and anxiety.

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