It is tough to manage financial stress especially when everything around just seems to pile up over time. You might think that there is no end to your worries as you make payment after payment every month. Then you look at all the other people around you and they seem to be going through the same thing. They are simply working to make ends meet.
As you try to figure out how to manage your finances, you might be trying to understand what is causing your financial stress. There could be a lot of reasons for this and figuring them out could take time. As you do that, there are ways to address your current status and deal with the stress you are feeling. With it, you could have an easier time fixing the root cause of your financial problem.
There are a lot of ways to do this. For one, technology is starting to help consumers make financial management a lot less stressful. Though still at the incubation stage, USAToday.com shares how one company is exploring the use of virtual reality in helping people manage their finances. This might be far off in the future from actual production. However, it just goes to show that companies recognize that there is a need to address financial stress in consumers.
If you are trying to look for ways to manage financial stress at present, here are a few things to consider.
Pick up a physical activity
When you start to feel that financial stress is starting to bog you down, you might want to lace up your rubber shoes and go for a run. You can also play basketball, football, tennis or any sport that you know of. If your bike is just rusting away and collecting dust, clean it up and take it out for a spin in your neighborhood. Businessinsider.com shares that one CEO sees exercise as a natural stress reliever.
For one, you get to take your mind off the problem and do something that you love. Any form of exercise also releases endorphins into the body. This gives people a positive feeling and can lighten up your mood. This can prove useful when you are going through a stressful time. After the physical activity, you get to face your challenges with a clear head.
Catch up with good friends
This is another way to manage financial stress and it involves catching up with your friends or close family relatives. This again has something to do with endorphins being released into your system. This time around, it can come from all the laughter you can share with your close friends. It is best to surround yourself with people that know you really well.
As you do this, you might even get some tips and tricks from your friends on how they manage financial stress. Since you are talking to close friends, you can be more open with your situation. This allows them properly assess your problem and even identify what is triggering your stress. You might be surprised that there are underlying factors that lead to your financial stress.
Spend quality time with family
Another thing you can do to manage financial stress is to spend some quality time with your family. You might be surprised how it can help you lower down negative emotions you are feeling at the moment. A quiet romantic dinner with your partner can help you relax. A family movie time can remind you of why you are working extra hard in the office or business.
Spending time with your family reminds you of your priorities in life. You might have debt problems that are starting to pile up and you are feeling the pressure. Mortgage loans, car loans, and even your own student loans. But one look at your children, your spouse and the house that you live in can remind you why you do what you do.
Put some time into your hobby
Do you love to bake cookies and cupcakes? Do you feel relaxed when you get under the hood of your car and tinker with the engine? Or does a walk in the park with your camera on hand gives you some level of satisfaction? If you have identified what your hobby is, you might want to allocate some time for it to help you feel relaxed.
The more relaxed you are, the better you can manage financial stress. You can strategize better how to solve your problem. You can better figure out how to cut down on some expenses or increase your earning potential. Your hobby might even help you do that as you find a way to make it into an income-positive hobby.
Change your financial outlook
There are times when simply changing the way you look at things can help you solve them a little easier. You might get all worked up every time you make a house payment because of the sheer amount it takes away from your income. The same goes for your car loans and even your student loans. You might even feel a certain amount of stress whenever you save up for your retirement.
Changing your outlook can give you a different perspective with the way you handle your finances. Whenever you make payments on your mortgage, think of the equity you are building up. You are slowly paying down your house. Are you stressed with student loan payments? Think of it as the reason for having a great career that pays the bills.
Take a proactive approach
It is best to prepare than to be reactive in times of adversity and can help you manage financial stress. Take your reserve funds for example – taking a proactive approach means saving up for it rather than search for the money when you need it. It saves you time and even keeps you out of debt when financial emergencies arise.
It would also help your cause when you employ a “can do” attitude rather than sulk in one corner whenever challenges creep up your finances. When a monthly statement comes in, it is best to open it up and look at the numbers. When you choose to just shove it in a drawer and try to forget about it, you are only making matters worse.
As the bill sits there, your financial obligation remains unpaid. Once the due date passes, you are now looking at penalties, interest and other fees added onto your bill. Not to mention the ding on your credit score and lost opportunity with future loan applications. This all adds up to your financial stress because you did not open your monthly statements.
It is quite challenging to manage financial stress but it is not an impossible task. If you feel like everyone else is in the same boat so why bother, then you will be carrying that stress over your shoulders for a very long time. If you see a lot of people neck deep in debt and unable to manage their finances it doesn’t mean that it is okay to do the same. There are ways to address the problem and lift that stress off of your shoulders. You just need a strategic approach and a good head on your shoulders and you are on your way to financial independence and freedom.