Worrying about money has been so ingrained in our culture that it has literally become an epidemic.
Do you hate how you feel when you worry about money? It is also known to be unhealthy, and can easily become a bad habit. The stress and lack of sleep one can endure affects other areas of our life as well. Yet there are just as effective ways to care for our finances without the emotional and physical strain of worrying.
Let’s first examine the destructive effects that worrying can have. Worrying affects not only your quality of life, but also the quality of life of those around you. Here are some ways worrying specifically harms you and your loved ones: keeps you from enjoying life, keeps you up at night, makes you unhealthy, strains relationships, and can lead to behavioral issues.
There are 2 ways to stop worrying about money
Changing the way you think and changing what you are doing. By doing both changes your life, it will have the greatest impact on your quality of life, health, and relationships.
1. The first way is to create a motto. The more positive thoughts you feed yourself, the more you will believe and embody it. You can say it to yourself every time you begin to worry or post the motto in places where you will often see it, like your bathroom mirror or computer monitor.
Need ideas, like worrying changes nothing, my life is full of so many blessings, I’m good at handling financial challenges.
Have faith in yourself. Draw peace and comfort from what you believe. Many people turn to their faith in times of need, and your faith can allow you to let go of your fear of the future. Know that you will be taken care of. Try praying or meditating to clear your mind and find peace.
Often, we focus on the negatives in life, which is one good reason why we worry. To fight the worry is to focus on the positives. A way to do this is to write down 3-5 positive things that happened during your day. Do this every evening before bed for at least two weeks. If you can be aware of what you’re thankful for, you will in turn be more positive and can better handle any problems, including money.
2. The second way is to change your act. How you act is one thing you have control over. Focus your energies here and make a point of doing, or at least trying, the following.
It’s about balance. If you check your bank account every day, you’re probably thinking about money too much. Instead, set aside a couple of times every week to review and discuss your finances. You don’t have to worry every day of the week because you know you’ll deal with things then.
If you don’t already one, make a budget now. A budget can serve as a real eye-opener to what you are spending your money on and it will afford you greater control over your spending. It will also ease the fear of not knowing by giving you a firm grasp on your financial situation rather than having your finances simply run wild.
Pay off debt. There are many ways to do this, such as getting rid of those things you really don’t need or use, whiich may mean you might have to brown bag it for lunch, cancel expensive cable and so on. The snowball method, envelope method and so on can be a big help as well. Build an emergency fund in case anything expensive and unexpected happens, like having to replace your water heater or losing your current source of income. Most experts recommend saving at least six months’ worth of living expenses or setting a goal to do so. You may have to start slow and it may take a while but just doing it will give peace of mind and a sense of accomplishment.
When it comes to your finances, simplify by combining various accounts. Aim to have one checking account, one savings account, and one credit card. Having only three accounts will calm your worries because it is a lot less to monitor and control. Multiple checking and saving accounts can lead of charges you do not want such as overdraft fees.
Autopay programs are a good tip as well. If you are late paying bills you receive late fees which is an unnecessary fee and costly. Pay on your loans more frequently. You will pay less interest and pay them off faster. Pay half one paycheck and half the other.
As a final note, worrying is a bad habit to break. We probably have learned this worry from our parents, which they used worry to stay on top of finances. It’s almost as if worrying serves as our adult rite of passage. If you are a worrier, it’s time to give it up. Look at your life and evaluate what you worry about focus on changing it. Get motivated and use the tips above to see what you can change.
I am always available to talk to you one on one. If you are interested in learning more about Mandala Integrative Medicine or how to better handle your money please come to the Professional Development Integrative Lifestyle Forum.
Jean Schertz is a Finance coach at Mandala Integrative Medicine. She specializes in financial goal setting, professional growth and work productivity. To learn more about our lifestyle program or about our clinic please follow our blog.