Are you one of those people who wakes up at night thinking about money?
Sometimes the thoughts keep us from even getting to sleep. Sometimes they creep up even during the day. Usually the thoughts are questions like: How to get more? How to pay the bills? Will I ever have enough to live, let alone to ever afford the finer things in life? How am going to make it? What if the car breaks–how can I afford to fix it? These thoughts can be a simple case of overanalyzing, or it could be unhealthy worry, stress and anxiety that takes away our joy and interferes with our relationships and our health. I can relate because I’ve been there–but more about that another day….
If you don’t have money concerns, good for you! You may consider yourself extremely special!
Either you have learned how to manage your finances effectively, manage stress well, or on the downside perhaps you haven’t given your situation much thought. Many of us get up and go to work everyday and go through life paycheck to paycheck and squeak by, thinking that’s the way it is supposed to be.
If you are one of those who are concerned about their finances though, you have plenty of company.
A recent report from the American Psychological Association (APA)¹ indicated that money (62 percent) and work (61 percent) remain among the top common stressors for Americans. An article earlier this year from CNBC² noted that 43 percent of adults polled identified unexpected expenses and 34 percent identified simply making ends meet as their primary financial concerns. The article goes on to say that fewer than half of adults have saved $1000 to cover an emergency–meaning they are basically going pay check to pay check. Does that sound familiar?
Not only do most American’s lack sufficient savings to cover emergencies, but they are also racking up credit card debt to record-breaking levels.
Earlier this month, BizJournals3 reported that credit card debt is on the upswing, up 8.6% over last year, with the average American adult with over $4,000 in credit card debt and $8,683 per household. Credit card companies are charging higher interest rates, and according to Credit Card Catalog4, average rates are moving up to 20% for new cardholders. Existing cardholders are also seeing increased rates. Do the math, and see how much the credit card company is making each year on that balance…and how much consumers (you) are paying to borrow that money.
Fun (not-so fun?) fact about worrying about money:
Worrying about money is bad for your health. People who worry about their finances have higher risks of significant health problems. Worrying about money can affect your health in more ways than you may realize. Research reported in Business News Daily 5 has established that the risks of several significant health problems increase when people worry about their financial situation. In fact, people with high stress over their finances were found to be twice as likely to have a heart attack versus those not worried. And health problems weren’t limited to those of the heart—digestive tract problems, headaches and migranes, depression, and significantly higher levels of muscle tension and low back pain were reported. And you already may have thought that you had enough to worry about!
The good news is that there are some proven methods to get your finances under control and to reduce worry and stress.
Business News Daily5 reported that people who take an active role in planning and learning about their finances were less stressed and more confident in their financial situations. Stay tuned for more info about how you can feel better about your finances, get your finances in order, and fulfil your destiny.
And if you can’t wait for Part 2, feel free to contact me.