For most Americans, there are few things more stressful than dealing with money. We’re constantly worried about how we’re going to pay the bills each month, invest in our future, and save for the things that we desperately want and need. The uncertainty of the economy, and constant changes in the way that we earn money doesn’t help situations much either.
However, just because money can be a stressful topic for many people, doesn’t mean that you have to commit yourself to a life of panicking about every penny. There are things that you can do to get to the bottom of your stress issues and leave them behind once and for all. If you’re sick of cash being the source of your high blood pressure, then the following tips could help.
1. Find the Source of your Stress Points
The first thing you need to do is figure out what’s causing you to feel so stressed in the first place. Most people don’t just worry about money in general. Maybe you’re concerned that you’re not putting enough money away for your retirement, and you’re getting older. Perhaps your old loans are getting on top of you, with interest rates that you can’t afford.
If you know what’s causing your sources of stress, then you can find ways to overcome them. For instance, if your problem is with old and expensive interest rates on your loans, then you could consider taking out a separate loan with lower interest rates to consolidate your debts into something more affordable. If you’re worried about retirement, try changing up your budget to see if you can contribute more cash.
2. Be Realistic
One of the biggest mistakes that you can make when it comes to getting control over your cash, is putting too many restrictions on yourself. Although we often tell ourselves that budgeting is about forcing ourselves to say “no” when we really want to say “yes”, there’s more to it than that. When you begin to cut down on your spending, there will be areas where you need to compromise. However, you still need to be realistic and give yourself some wiggle room.
For instance, if you currently spend $300 a month on food just for yourself, then it doesn’t make sense to say that you’re going to immediately cut down to $100 a month. You need to start slow, giving yourself time to try new strategies. Consider trying to cut your expenses by $50 to begin with, then go from there.
3. Practice Patience
Usually, when people are struggling from stress caused by money, one of the biggest problems that they have is a lack of patience. You might find yourself getting frustrated because you’re not getting to your savings goals as quickly as you had hoped. When this happens, you end up talking yourself out of putting money into your savings account, because you tell yourself that it doesn’t matter anyway.
Instead, you need to be patient with yourself, and pat yourself on the back for the hard work that you’re doing. Just because you don’t end up with thousands of dollars in your savings account a few months after you’ve decided to start changing your spending habits doesn’t mean you’re not making a difference. Remember that every penny counts.
4. Take off the Pressure with Extra Income
If no matter what you do, you feel like you’re never going to have enough money to pay for everything that you need, then it could be time to start looking into extra income or earning opportunities. These days, you don’t necessarily need to rush from one job to another to make some extra cash. There are plenty of websites online that you can sign up for if you want to earn money as a freelance writer or personal assistant.
There are even ways to make money that don’t require any extra work at all. For instance, you could consider renting out a spare room to people who need it or give people an opportunity to rent your parking space so that they can keep their car closer to work.
5. Keep Trying
Finally, no matter how stressful things may get, don’t give up. Remember that it’s going to take time for you to see a huge change in your finances , and that sometimes you’re going to have slips that mean you spend more than you mean to. Give yourself a break, and don’t forget that it’s only money at the end of the day.