Are you under financial stress? Psychologist Dr. Beck Jackson gives us her practical advice and tips for taking back control and taking care of your mental and physical health.
If you have financial concerns right now, you are not alone.
Australia has gone through an unprecedentedly difficult period in the past few years – as a result of the pandemic, natural disasters, high interest rates and inflation, many families are having difficult times financially.
As a professional, I can confirm that the stress and depression we experience from financial worries can have an additional impact on your income directly if we don’t recognize it and try to overcome it.
“People may engage in unhealthy behaviors to try to deal with financial stress, from avoidance This can lead to overeating, online shopping and drinking more alcohol, which in turn can lead to poor mental and financial health.” Says psychologist Dr. Beck Jackson.
Although it may seem overwhelming right now, there are some practical and helpful steps you can take to help manage your money, which will in turn protect your mental and physical health and allow you to feel more in control and able to face the challenges of everyday life.
Here are some practical ways to manage your mental health during times of financial stress
Acknowledge feelings instead of suppressing them.
You may be feeling any number of feelings now, and that’s okay.
“says d Be.
“Hoarding feelings and “sucking cuddles” or trying to block out feelings by telling yourself “others are bad” can get in the way of moving forward.”
Acknowledging your financial situation and feeling stressed is the first step to taking action and finding the light at the end of the tunnel.
Share your concerns with people you trust
Talk about your financial concerns with your support network, and they may offer new perspective or ideas for getting through this difficult time. A common problem is often a problem in half.
You don’t have to go into sensitive details if you’re not comfortable doing so, but for some, simply having a conversation about your general concerns can improve your negative feelings, Dr. Beck expresses.
If you have children, reassure them
Children can often react when their parents are under high levels of stress and may start to adopt internalized behaviors (such as anxiety) or external behaviors (such as aggression or misbehavior).
“Have age-appropriate conversations to reassure them that their basic needs are being met. Say things like, “This isn’t something you have to worry about. This is my job as an adult. I work really hard to make sure we have what we need,” Be.
It’s obvious, but taking steps to reduce unnecessary spending will help you tremendously… because spending less will help you feel more in control.
Don’t neglect your income. When it comes to making extra money, the sharing economy offers plenty of opportunities. You may decide to rent out your spare room, share your car, or pet sitting for the next cash boost.
Watch what you are currently spending your money and spending habits and come up with some practical ways you can temporarily reduce expenses and save money.
Spend some time checking any direct debits You havememberships, insurances and phone plans. Ask about other deals and options. Sometimes these things get “set and forgotten”, but we don’t review them enough.
Set a realistic budget for the family’s cost of living Like groceries. Plan meals using the budget meal planner in The Healthy Mummy app. Cook meals in bulk and freeze meals.
You still need to have fun, so look for free entertainment in your local area, and visit as many community activities as possible. Try not to give up on fun activities or having fun. Just rethink how you fund them.
Where possible, avoid “buy now, pay later” Models that can command a high interest.
Get creative Consider throwing a dress-up party with friends, try exchanging toys and games with other families, exchanging puzzles or games, and visiting community game and bookstores.
Practical and professional financial support is available to all of us.
Consult a financial advisor
If you need support to manage your immediate debts, you can speak with a financial advisor who can help you find a solution to your financial problems.
There are also Australian government and charity organizations that offer free confidential financial advice and counseling if you are under financial stress:
ask for help
Organizations such as The Salvation Army and St Vincent de Paul and local community centers offer emergency relief services to help with food or parcel vouchers, transportation vouchers, pharmacy vouchers, clothing or furniture, back-to-school costs and even partial payment of utility vouchers to help with family financial stresses.
“It can be difficult to ask for support but remember that time will pass, and these organizations are there to help people get through difficult times,” says Dr. Beck.
Things that may suffer if you are dealing with financial stress
Take care of your mental health
The sooner you acknowledge that you need to break the cycle between financial struggles and emotional struggles, the more likely you are to be able to work on poor mental health and take back control of things.
Make a plan with your partner
Financial stress can put a strain on relationships, but it can be helpful to address the issue as a team.
“Multiple parties responsible for spending, earning or managing money,says Dr Beck.
“Try to budget together and spend separately, within your means.”
Have any rules about spending that you can agree to. Remembering that managing your mood swings and discussing your financial concerns when both of you are calm will help you have more constructive conversations.
Knowing that you are in the situation together and that you are united in finding a solution can be powerful for relationships.
Manage your mood
Maintaining a calm and balanced mood is positive for your physical and mental health, but it also allows you to be rational and practical even when the situation is difficult.
“Meditation, exercise, talking about it, journaling, and sleep are all good places to start.suggests Dr. Bec.
you are not alone. You can speak to a financial advisor for free by calling National Debt Helpline On 1 800 007 007, Dr. Bec.
Meanwhile, it can also be helpful to speak with your GP to help find a counselor to help you regulate your feelings if you feel helpless and depressed over money matters.
Give yourself permission to be positive
Make a plan and try to stick to it, and try to be positive! Oftentimes, when we’re in dumps, we can feel like it’s hard to pull ourselves out of it. To stay positive, focus on the areas of your finances that you can control and build on those feelings of control and the things that bring you joy — your family, pets, and simple pleasures.
For more great family budgeting tips, check out The Healthy Mummy Budget Hub, your go-to for budget-friendly tips, tricks, and deals from The Healthy Mummy Budget Squad.
Discussion about this post