IS MONEY STRESS KILLING YOU?
It will come as little surprise to most of us that stress can have a negative effect on our bodies. But did you know that stress caused by worrying about money could be the biggest cause of this?
At least that is the conclusion that researchers have drawn from a study carried out in the US by Associated Press and AOL.
Although the survey is American, there is little doubt in my mind that the results would be little different if carried out in Australia.
The study found that of the people who reported high stress levels with money:
27% reported digestive problems,
44% reported migraines,
23% reported depression,
51% reported suffering from muscle tension and back pain
When compared to people who reported low financial stress, this is almost double the number reporting back pain, 3 times the number with digestive troubles, 5 times the number suffering depression, and a whopping 10 times the number reporting migraines.
In other words, money stress is not a joke and it could be killing you.
Stress is largely a function of feeling out of control. So getting control over your money is the key to reducing the stress it brings to our lives.
If you think money stress might be impacting your life, try these seven stress-busting actions:
1. Understand your Money Personality
We all deal differently with money. The LifeSherpa Moneymax® money personality test can help you identify the personal traits that impact on how you deal with money. Knowing what pushes your buttons is the first step in managing stress.
2. Identify your biggest money stress.
What keeps you up at night? Is it debt? Just trying to make ends meet? Some big upcoming expense?
Once you can name what stresses you most, you can work out a plan to move forward. Every step towards a solution will lighten the stress load.
3. Raise your money awareness.
Get knowledgeable! Knowledge leads to empowerment. Empowerment to control. Control reduces stress. Read articles, write down your current situation (income, expenses, what you own and what you owe) develop a plan.
4. Put your money on autopilot.
Automate as much of your finances (bills, savings and other transactions). This will help ensure you’re on track and relieve a lot of the day-to-day money stresses.
5. Practice gratitude.
Practicing gratitude for what you have can go a long way to generating feelings of contentment which can help banish stress. It’s pretty difficult to feel money stress when your mind is filled with all that you have to be grateful for.
6. Stay healthy
The human body works best when to is fit and healthy. Make sure you get exercise and eat well. This will strengthen your immune system, helping your body deal better with the stresses of daily life.
7. Seek help when you need it.
If you still struggle with money stress despite your best efforts, you’re not alone. Seek out a credit counselor, a financial coach or a financial planner to help you get sorted.
Vince Scully | LifeSherpa
With over 25 years in Financial Services from consulting to management, Vince Scully is the go-to guy for wealth management and financial advice. Vince founded the Calliva Group; a fund manager, product issuer, advisor and lender to Government and private clients. Vince is an advisor to the Wealth Management Industry, and prior to his role as CEO at Calliva, a senior member of Macquarie bank’s infrastructure team.