Coping With Money Stress and Anxiety

The Covid-19 crisis is, first and foremost, a health crisis. However, it is becoming an economic one too. Economic decline itself has an adverse effect on health. Thousands if not millions of people, may see their income plummet and this is putting a huge strain on people’s mental wellbeing. Feeling low or anxious is a normal response when you’ve lost your job, been made redundant, or you’re struggling with debt. Of course, the modern world offers up a bunch of solutions to stress and anxiety, but you often end up paying for them. So here are a few methods that might help you reduce the stress and anxiety.

  1. Journal daily about things you’re grateful for

You might have heard already but keeping a gratitude journal is good for you. While regular journaling is proven to improve your well-being, writing down all the things that you are grateful for can take the experience to a whole new level.  By thinking of the positive experiences of the day or reminding yourself of what you have to be thankful for, you are much less likely to ponder over your worries and thus clear your mind for a good nights’s sleep.  Gratitude journals reduce stress because people who engage with this activity are more likely to take care of themselves and live a more meaningful and healthy life.

2. Exercise daily

Physical activity can improve your mood if you’re feeling low. There are many free online videos and information on how to get fit without spending any money.  Scientists have found that regular participation in aerobic exercise has been shown to decrease levels of tension, elevate and stabilize mood, improve sleep, and improve self-esteem. About five minutes of aerobic exercise can begin to stimulate anti-anxiety effects.

3. Eat a well balanced diet

What you eat can affect your mood, so when you’re worried about money it’s important to keep eating a healthy balanced diet. The cost of eating healthy can be high sometimes, but it is possible to save money and eat well. Frozen fruit and veg is a great alternative to fresh produce, and it’s almost always cheaper too.  Leading a busy lifestyle can encourage you to slack on cooking when at home, and reaching for the junk food can be all too tempting when you’re feeling under pressure. Instead, try cooking at home and prepare meals in bulk for the upcoming week. In this way you save time and you eat more healthy food.

4. Go to sleep early

Sleep deprivation has a negative effect on emotion and performance. Sleep can ‘recharge’ the brain at the end of each day, just like we need to charge a mobile phone battery after prolonged use. Maintaining a regular sleep-wake cycle allows the natural rhythm of the body to be reset every day and therefore optimises brain functioning.

5. Face your fears

Money worries can makes us feel anxious and alienated to others. But sometimes facing our fears will generally make things more bearable. Talk to people that might be able to help.

Where to get help?

The main thing to remember when you’re stressed and worried about your financial situation is that it is common and manageable.  There are plenty of helpful resources online:StepChange Debt Charity, Money Advice Service, Money Savings Experts and many more.