Financial stress is a huge concern for many people. In America alone, the American Psychological Association reports that 62 % of people feel stressed about their finances. This number is an alarming amount because it means more people worry about their money than people who feel safe and secure about their wealth.
I don’t have the data for other countries around the world, but it’s safe to assume the numbers aren’t vastly different. Perhaps the rate of financial stress is lower in countries where the people have less regard for material possessions than they do in countries like America. However, financial stress is present in the lives of people around the world, regardless of the statistics.
Nick Ortner has years of experience helping people reduce their stress and overcome their anxiety. He says that the top worry his clients have is anxiety about money. Money issues are a priority in my life too, and I often felt anxious about running out of money, but now I feel much calmer and relaxed when thinking about how to solve my money problems.
The state of our finances causes financial stress. I have done a small research and found that there are three highest causes of financial stress. Having one of these causes exist in your life is enough to cause a high amount of stress. Unfortunately, many people have to deal with multiple causes of stress, resulting in a high enough stress level to pose a serious threat to their mental health.
1. Burdened by a Mountain of Debt
Being trapped in never-ending debt is the winning cause of financial stress. In America, student debt is one of the most significant debts that individuals own. They incur enormous debt to pursue a degree but have a tough time finding a job or profession with a high enough salary to pay their debt. As a result, they may spend years, even decades, paying off their student loan, resulting in financial stress.
Another leading cause of debt is credit card debt. People who live the consumerism lifestyle rely on their credit card to make purchases. It’s easy to buy more things than they can afford, and they end up not being able to make the payments on their credit card debt. The result is that their debt increases due to the interest. Credit card debt is also a big problem where I come from, even though the consumerist lifestyle isn’t as prevalent here as it is in America.
2. Spending More Than Your Income
Many people feel that it gets increasingly difficult to make a stable and adequate income. People rely on working freelance or part-time jobs to supplement their income, and in some cases, it is their primary income. The rising price of rent and groceries make the condition worse and cause people to spend more than what they make.
You can avoid spending more than you make by obediently following a budget, but it isn’t always that easy. There are some instances where you need to buy what you need to buy, even though you have to stretch over your limit to get it. On top of that, it’s difficult to lower the standard of your living, and doing so may even cause you more stress on top of the financial stress you feel.
I have a volatile income, meaning that I get my income from my online business, that can fluctuate from a high amount of money to a low amount. I mentioned before that this volatility has made me anxious previously, but now I am more calm and relaxed even though the income is still volatile.
3. Unexpected Emergency Expenses
The third highest cause of financial stress is unexpected expenses for emergencies. Accidents happen, illnesses strike, and these events put extra strain on your money. You may live very carefully, but then other people are reckless, and you become a victim of their behavior. You may live healthily, but illness strikes whoever it wants whenever it wants.
In some cases, you can purchase insurance to protect yourself in case these emergencies occur. But the cost of insurance can sometimes be a burden in itself. If these emergencies happen, and you have no insurance or savings, financial stress can hit you hard and make you feel helpless.
How to Dissolve Financial Stress?
The three reasons above are the top causes of financial stress I’ve found in my research. I am a ‘victim’ of the second cause, spending more than my income (occasionally) because my income is volatile. As I’ve shared above, I feel more calm about my money issues now than before because I use Tapping to help me calm down and think clearly. The program that I follow is the Tapping Solution for Financial Success by Nick Ortner. It doesn’t automatically solve the money issues that I have, but it does help solve the emotional component of financial stress so that my mental energy can be used for finding a solution.