It feels like you’re riding a never-ending financial roller coaster.
On payday, you feel on top of the world, but by the end weekend, you’re feeling defeated. You went over your budget, your credit card balance grew, and you’re now waiting for your next paycheck. If only you were lucky to have good financial habits right?
Repeat this process each month and it’s no wonder why you’re stressed about your finances. I know because this was the case for me a few years back. I’d purchased a car I couldn’t afford, clothes I didn’t need, only to feel guilty afterward.
So how do you stop stressing about money?
By taking action on the root of your problems. Not by learning new money strategies. What makes this guide different is that I’ve applied the strategies I’ll share with you.
These strategies have worked for me and my hope is that they’ll have the same effect on you. If you’re tired of sleepless nights then listen up–here’s how you can finally stop stressing about money.
“The only person holding you back is you.”–Normani Kordei
The truth isn’t always pleasant, but it may be the thing you need to accept to start heading in the right direction.
Do you currently have large debt? Are you not earning enough to live your desired lifestyle? Or, are you worried that if you lose your job today you’ll be a financial mess?
An important step to take to stop worrying about money is to stop being a victim of your current situation. Accept your current situation, and have compassion for yourself.
Don’t beat yourself up for why you’re currently a financial mess. Instead, put things in perspective and realize that everyone has setbacks. Tell yourself things like “I know this is a challenging time for me right now. But, what can I do to feel better?”
Your brain has the capacity to give and receive care, so you can be supportive of yourself during hard times. Start small by changing the stories you play in your mind after each failure. Eventually, you’ll handle setbacks better, allowing you to live a happier life.
“We buy things we don’t need with money we don’t have to impress people we don’t like.” –Dave Ramsey
How well do you understand yourself?
Do you like to wear nice clothes or are you trying to impress others? Do you enjoy going to the bars each weekend, or are you trying to fit in?
Ask yourself these questions if you haven’t already. Many will go on with their lives making bad financial decisions trying to impress others. Instead, worry more about your opinion and forget about the Joneses.
You’re going to face the stress for making bad financial decisions, so why not value your opinion more? Here’s were having self-compassion pays off.
Since you’ll be less influenced by external factors you’ll make less impulsive decisions. For example, you wouldn’t buy a car to impress others as I did.
Still not convinced?
Take this case study, for example, where participants watched a sad and neutral video. The participants who watched a sad video offered to pay four times more money for bottled water. Imagine how much money you’d spend if you were feeling sad.
Self-compassion involves more than loving yourself. It’s about accepting your flaws, being kind to yourself, and being mindful. Use self-compassion to live happier and spend less money.
“Income seldom exceeds personal development” –Jim Rohn
If you’re not satisfied with your current financial situation, start investing in yourself.
Learning is a lifelong journey, not something you only do while you’re in school. Focus on investing in yourself by setting a time each day to learn. For example, read books, listen to Podcasts, take courses, or find a mentor.
Learning beyond the basics for different financial topics is necessary. You’ll put yourself in a position to better handle your money and make better decisions. But, don’t limit yourself to only learning.
Set financial goals.
There’s no excuse for not having enough time to learn. Everyone’s situation is different, so you’ll have to work around your schedule. This may mean waking up at 5 am to have a few hours of uninterrupted time to learn.
I was never a morning person but became one once I started accomplishing more. As you invest in yourself daily, you’ll start feeling more purposeful and productive.
If there’s one thing you should get from this guide it’s this–stop dwelling over the past.
This is an issue that I’ve experienced and one that you need to avoid. Stop replaying the story on how you wish you didn’t have debt and embrace your current situation. Bringing the past won’t fix your financial issues and will only rob you from your present.
Your thoughts are more powerful than you think. Instead, fill your mind with positive thoughts through affirmation. Grab a notebook and write down positive statements.
Of course, don’t expect these statements to work if you aren’t taking action. So do affirmations work? They can.
From my experience, they’ve have helped me build a positive mindset. Affirmations feed your subconscious mind.
From here your subconscious will work its magic to make these thoughts a reality. It won’t be enough to read your affirmation each morning. You’ll need to put emotion and desire into them.
A meaningful goal will help you stay committed despite the challenges you may face.
For example, if you’d like to run your own business 5 years from now, set a goal to save a year or two’s worth of your salary. This would help you take a break from work to experiment with your idea if you’d decided to do so. By setting intentional goals you’ll focus on saving and improving your finances.
Start by asking what you hope to achieve 5–10 years from now. Don’t give a vague answer such as “I want to be a millionaire 5 years from now.” This is not only vague but unrealistic.
Instead, set goals like saving $20K in 3 years to buy a rental property. In this scenario, your main goal is reaching financial independence. Use a journal to write down your goals, even if you hate writing things down.
Because writing down your goals works. Studies have shown that people who set goals are 10 times more likely to achieve them.
Busy isn’t always a bad thing.
Of course, too much of anything is. For example, don’t become too busy that you’d sacrifice your important relationships. And, don’t become busy working on the wrong tasks because this will be time wasted.
The trick is to become busy long enough to keep your mind from thinking negative thoughts. It’s hard, maybe impossible for you to feel mad and happy at the same time right? The same concept works with your thoughts.
You can’t be productive and worry at the same time. That’s why it’s important to set goals. It’s great to have financial goals, but you can also create personal goals.
For example, you may decide you want to build schools in third world countries. This big goal will need a lot of work and will keep you busy. After all, you’d be building a business to fund this dream.
Being busy won’t cure your stress about money. But, you’ll spend less of your time worrying and more time being productive instead.
You’ll never be 100% stress-free.
There will always be other factors besides your finances that’ll challenge you. But why would you? This would mean that you’d always be happy, and that’s scary.
The truth is stressful moments can rip you apart only if you let them. Stress will always be there, but you’ll have to become better at managing it. Your finances are currently stressing you because you’re not in the position you’d like to be.
Imagine how different your life would be if you’d handled finances better. You’d still face challenges but were more compassionate with yourself. You’d invest in yourself daily and set meaningful goals.
And because of this, you’d now be earning more than you’d ever imagined. Your finances would be straight and you would no longer stress about money.
It would seem like this scenario is near impossible right now, but believe me, it’s not. You have what it takes to be successful. Use this guide as your stepping stone to start heading in the right direction.
Life is too short to stress about money. Love yourself more and get your finances straight. Happiness is waiting on the other side.
Chris writes personal finance and productivity articles for software companies. He gets fresh ideas through continuously investing in himself and interviewing successful entrepreneurs.