feeling financially stressed

Feeling financially stressed? Find peace of mind with these 7 tips.

Managing finances has always been a challenging task. However, due to high inflation, job insecurity, buzz about the transition to central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), recent US bank failures, financial stresses have become painfully real for a lot of people. 

If you’re feeling financially stressed, you are not alone.

Financial wellness is a crucial aspect of everyone’s life, and it’s important to take steps to stay on top of  it during these challenging times. Here are some tips, starting with some of the most traditional strategies and ones more applicable for the crazy times we are living through:

1. Create a Budget: A budget is a crucial tool that helps you keep track of your income and expenses. In challenging times, it’s even more important to create a budget to manage your finances. You can easily create a budget by calculating your monthly income and subtracting your expenses, including bills, groceries, rent, and transportation costs. And it’s easier than you think to get started. Just create an Excel spreadsheet, find an app or do it the old-fashioned way with a pen and notebook. Once you have a budget, you can identify areas where you can cut back and save money.

2. Save Money: Irrespective of whether we are in a recession or in a period of economic growth, saving money will always help improve your financial wellness. Moreover, it’s important to save money because it can help you during times of uncertainty. To begin, set aside a certain amount of money each month to create an emergency fund. And try to save at least three to six months’ worth of living expenses in an emergency fund. Start small; a few dollars every week are drops in the bucket that fill up quickly over time.

3. Pay off Debts: Another important step to improve your financial wellness is to pay off your debts. Debts, such as credit cards, loans, and mortgages, can be a huge financial burden. To pay off debt, start by prioritizing high-interest debt first, and create a debt repayment plan. Making consistent payments towards your debt will help you reduce the amount you owe and improve your credit score over time. And you’ll sleep better at night!

4. Cut Back on Expenses: During challenging times, it’s important to evaluate your expenses and identify areas where you can reduce your spending. For example, you can cut back on dining out, shopping for non-essential items, or subscription services. Even skipping your daily Starbucks coffee will free up additional money that you can reallocate to a more urgent expenditure. Additionally, you can negotiate your phone, cable, or internet bill. Reducing your expenses is something everyone can do with a little bit of discipline.

5. Explore Alternative Investments: Many of us have already been contributing to retirement accounts like RRSP (in Canada) or 401(k) and IRAs (US). Are they the best retirement vehicles for the volatile economic times we are living through? Well, that’s up to your personal situation and your portfolio. Be sure to explore your options with a qualified financial advisor who isn’t just pushing products for a commission. Additionally, you might want to consider investing in stocks (commodities) or other alternative investment options like precious metals, precious metals-backed retirement accounts, or cryptocurrencies that align with your financial goals.

6. Bank with More than One Institution: If you’re spooked about the possibility of your bank collapsing, spread your deposits among trusted financial institutions or credit unions that offer FDIC or CDIC insurance. Check out your bank’s liquidity situation, ask questions and then move your deposits accordingly.

7. Keep some Cash Outside of the Banks: In the event your bank is unexpectedly closed, the ATM doesn’t work, or online banking is down for a number of days due to a system-wide outage (maybe in preparation for the roll-out of CBDCs), having some cash at home will allow you to transact the old-fashioned way until banking services are restored. Keep an amount of cash enough to cover one to three months of basic daily expenses if you can.

If you’re really stressed about your financial situation –  whether you’re concerned about your monthly cash flow or worried about the security of traditional investments or your bank’s digital banking agenda, it will eventually affect your mind-body health.

Anxiety and stress can manifest into a chronic disease if ignored over time. In addition to these strategies, a regular meditation practice and simple breathwork can help you manage daily stress levels. Financial wellness is a crucial part of your overall wellness. It’s never too late to start working towards financial wellness, and taking any of these small steps can make a big difference over time.

If you’d like to learn more about my coaching services that can help you achieve mind, body and financial wellness, contact me to schedule a free initial discovery call.