Seventy-two percent of Americans are stressed about money, according to a recent survey. This makes it one of the most common worries people have every day. The best method to alleviate financial stress is to gain a clear understanding of your circumstances, assume responsibility for your finances, and make minor adjustments that address your greatest fears. Here are some useful tips that will help you feel less stressed and get closer to your financial goals.
Have A Plan
When life gets busy, people use checklists to stay organized and make sure everything is taken care of, and a financial plan can be part of this. Make a plan for your money by writing down your financial goals and budget. How much money can be saved with the money you have? How much money do you want to put toward each goal? Having a list of all your expenses and short-term and long-term goals can help you see the big picture and draw the right conclusions.
Having a plan also helps you figure out how much you can save. You can figure out yours by subtracting your monthly expenses from your monthly income (after taxes). What’s left over is how much you could save. This helps you figure out how well you’re handling your money.
Prioritize What You Can Control
Not everything that stresses you out can be changed, and if you worry about things you can’t change, you’re likely to feel more stressed out because you can’t do anything about them.
Instead, think about the things you can change so you can work to make things better. Consider how much money you spend on food as a straightforward example. If you don’t already have a limited food budget, look for ways to reduce your grocery costs by a few dollars each time you go, like buying store-brand items that are less expensive or trying homemade recipes for beef jerky. Not only will you save money, but the sense of accomplishment and being in charge may also help you feel less stressed.
Have A Financial Buffer
Many people feel financially stressed when they don’t have much room for error. If you live from paycheck to paycheck, money worries are bound to creep into your mind: one bill or expense you didn’t expect could put you in a financial hole that’s hard to get out of.
Having an emergency contingency fund gives you more peace of mind during these times. By putting small amounts of money into a savings account or other emergency fund, you can build up a cushion that will help when money is tight, like when you lose your job or get medical bills. When you have that emergency fund, you can sleep better at night.
Ask For Help
Talking to a loved one, a health professional like your doctor or therapist, or an advice service can help a lot if you’re having trouble because of money problems and the stress that comes with them. Advice services are very helpful because they can help you figure out what to do next. For example, they can tell you if you are eligible for financial help or give you ideas on how to deal with your stress that we haven’t covered.