The mind has a tendency to anticipate the worst possible scenario. It searches for potential danger or negative outcomes to avoid. It does this because it wants you to stay alive. It knows you need food, shelter, connection, and protection. So it scans your life continuously for threats to those important elements.
Financial pressures are one of the greatest stresses the world faces today. Many of us find ourselves in over our heads with accumulated debt, uncertain job security, and mounting bills.
But the good news is that there are ways to slow your thoughts down and get control over the waves of financial concern that flood your mind.
Here are three ways you can begin to combat financial stress.
Pick a set time to analyze
Assign a certain time of the day or week that you will pore over your budget. Turn off all distractions at that time so your mind gets the message that you are truly focusing on what needs to be done. And jot down your concerns, thoughts, and ideas during the other days of the week so you get them down on paper and out of your head.
When the set time comes, analyze where you spent money that week and set goals on how to improve the next week. This will help settle your racing mind because it senses you have a plan.
Set up an emergency fund
Over half of Americans do not have more than $1,000 saved. That means that most of us are essentially living paycheck to paycheck, which is hard on an already overactive mind.
The best thing to do as you assess your budget is to find places where you can cut back to start saving for emergencies. (Or automatically set aside a certain dollar amount every month to build your fund.) This will give you breathing room and will allow your mind the space to trust that everything will be alright.
No more what if’s and worst case scenarios.
Talk about it with someone
Whether it's your partner, trusted friend, therapist, or financial advisor, make time to talk over your worries. Do not let them build and stir up anxiety. Talking things through can open doors to greater connection with others and can provide solutions you otherwise may have never thought of before. As well as positive, practical ways to combat negative messages from your brain.
The subject of personal finances is gradually becoming less and less taboo. Remember, you are not alone in the struggle.
Financial freedom comes from accomplishing small goals. Take a step today to start saving up your emergency fund in the Vimvest app.