How do you feel when thinking about money? If your heart skips a beat, you aren’t the only one who feels this way. For many people, money is a significant source of stress. And while experiencing stress is ok to a certain degree, when it becomes chronic, it can lead to different health conditions, including high blood pressure and heart disease.
On the other hand, people who are financially healthy report living healthier lives. This connection shouldn’t be surprising. After all, financial wellness provides security about the future, allowing you to live your life as comfortably as possible.
The good news is that there are ways to improve your financial well-being. For instance, investing allows you to beat the impact of the increasing cost of living. You can learn how to buy bitcoin and make your money work for you or choose any other investment option you prefer, including stocks, bonds or real estate. Let’s find out more about how financial wellness impacts your health and what you can do to improve it.
Financial wellness and mental health: how are they intertwined?
Financial well-being and mental health are critical aspects of everyone’s lives, but they are often seen as separated. In reality, however, there’s a strong link between the two, as they both play a crucial role in your happiness and overall life satisfaction. According to experts, financial issues can cause more stress than work and family, and this type of tension can often make individuals feel overwhelmed and depressed. What’s more, experiencing severe financial troubles can also lead to suicidal thoughts. For those already dealing with a mental health condition, financial stress can worsen their mental health. In turn, declining mental health has a negative impact on financial wellness, making it difficult to make good decisions about your money. It’s a vicious cycle that can be extremely challenging to break out of.
On the contrary, financially healthy people experience more joy because they don’t have to worry about managing their debt or meeting their needs.
Financial-related stress can increase the risk of physical illness
Money issues can also take a toll on your physical health, as stress triggers multiple physical reactions, like a fast heart rate, tensed muscles and rapid breathing. When your body is constantly in this state (as it often happens when your financial situation is stressful), it can lead to migraines, digestive system problems, heart arrhythmia, muscle tension and a weakened immune system.
Due to financial stress, individuals can also engage in unhealthy coping behaviors, like smoking and using drugs and alcohol, which can make it even more difficult to bounce back, only creating another cycle of facing financial issues.
Steps to boost your financial wellbeing
Even if you are now financially stressed, that doesn’t mean you’re stuck forever. You can improve your situation by changing your mindset and behavior. Here are some useful tips to consider.
Create a budget
Setting a budget is one of the best ways to develop good money habits that will empower you to achieve your financial goals. Write down your monthly income, expenses and savings to get the whole picture of your current situation and determine how much money there is left at the end of the month. Debts and monthly bills are critical aspects you need to consider when establishing your budget. Moreover, you should take into account any unexpected expenses, including health emergencies, family events, and so on, as they all quickly add up to your monthly spending. Consider using a money management app or an Excel spreadsheet to make the process easier.
Pay attention to where your money goes
How do you usually spend your money? If you can’t answer this question, consider tracking your expenses for one month. You can do this by checking your bank balance daily or through a money management app. Once you determine where your money goes, you can make the necessary adjustments if the expenditures don’t align with your current budget. Let’s say you eat out regularly instead of cooking at home. While this can be convenient in the short term, it will only hurt your financial health in the long run. So, before investing in a specific service or product, ask yourself whether you really need it. Learning to prioritize will make a positive difference in your finances.
Reduce your debt
It’s difficult to meet your financial goals when you put most of your budget into your debts. So, a good idea is to try to reduce them by writing down all the debts and their interest rates. Once you do so, you can start paying off the one with the highest interest rate. As you gradually eliminate debt, you’ll have more money to put toward your goals. Don’t underestimate the importance of this step – even if it takes a whole year, paying off your debt will boost your overall financial wellness.
Build regular savings
Here comes the fun part! After working so hard to become financially healthy, there should be some money that you can set aside. Regardless of how little you save, getting into this habit will help ensure financial security in the long run. If you make an effort to save more and spend less, you will eventually strike a balance, knowing that there is money in your savings account in case an emergency arises or for those times when you want to give yourself a special treat.
Wellness is often associated with your nutrition and sleep habits, but financial health also plays a role in the quality of your life. The stress related to personal finances can be toxic to your health, causing significant issues.
Financial wellness gives you freedom and a sense of security in a world that’s otherwise filled with uncertainties. While it’s true that money itself can’t make you happier, it is a tool that allows you to meet your basic needs and pursue your dreams. The good news is that you can gain more control over your finances by making smarter choices, such as understanding your needs and wants, having a spending plan, and so on.
So, are you ready to start taking control of your finances?