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Worrying about money is something nearly everybody experiences in their lifetime. In successive surveys, money is always the number one worry for people in America. People often believe that making more money will bring about less stress and more happiness. However, research suggests this is not the case, and financial stress still affects most people, no matter how great somebody’s income. The more we earn, the more we tend to spend, and the more we tend to borrow, so even if you have a very high income, worrying how to pay the mortgage and pay off debts can still cause stress. For those struggling financially, money worries can overshadow nearly everything else in life. Quite often, people let money worries fester, often burying their head in the sand rather than trying to get themselves free of debt, or finding coping strategies to reduce the impact of financial stress. Money stress affects us all no matter how well off we may appear to some, so learning how to cope with money stress is important for everybody.
Effects of Money Worries Worrying about money can have a huge impact on other aspects of your life. Financial stress often leads people to drink heavily, smoke more and take less interest in their health, well-being and relationships. If people find themselves turning to the bottle due to money worries, this certainly won’t help matters, it can also lead to compulsive drinking. If this happens, it is best to seek advice, and there are plenty of online resources aimed at helping find alcohol treatment. Money stress also affects sleep, and not having enough sleep only makes matters worse. Money worries can appear more severe when we are tired, and poor quality sleep is unhealthy. It’s also common for people worrying about money to neglect to eat properly, either due to not wanting to spend the money, or because of a lack of interest in one’s health.
Personal relationships suffer badly when people stress about money too. Money worries are one of the leading causes of arguments in a relationship and can often lead to separation or divorce if not sorted out.
Coping with Financial Stress
Perhaps the most important way to reduce financial stress is to talk about it. Not communicating your problems only makes them worse. If you are worrying about money then it’s important to your partner, which can prevent the problems money worries can cause in a relationship. Seeking professional help is also a good idea. Debt counselors can offer solutions and help a person budget properly.
It is also important not to let financial stress affect your health. Getting a good night’s sleep is crucial for a healthy life, and when you are feeling rested and refreshed, you are more able to make decisions and changes that can help reduce the money problems, such as speaking to debtors or working out personal finances. If you fail to get enough sleep, it’s far harder to act proactively.
When worrying about money it is easy to neglect your diet too. Ensure you eat properly, and get plenty of exercise. Good, nutritious food is never an extravagance, even if money problems are severe, so make sure you are eating enough fresh fruit and vegetables. If you can no longer afford your gym membership, go for long walks, which can also help you think and work through your problems.
Finding a way out
Money stress affects nearly everybody at some point in their life, but the key to coping is to not let it rule your life. Money is important, but it is not everything. If you find yourself worrying about money too much, try to take stock of more positive aspects to your life, such as family, friends and pastimes. It’s also important to come up with a strategy to solve the issues surrounding your money worries. Make a budget, speak to debtors, and most importantly don’t bury your head in the sand.
Speaking to people is also important. A problem shared is a problem halved, and just talking through your money worries may help you find the resolve to do something about it. Professional debt counseling or even just speaking to friends will often lead to useful suggestions that can help you to find a way out of the financial quagmire in which you’ve found yourself.
About the Author: Imogen Reed, aged 29, have been working full-time as a professional writer and researcher.