Finances and Stress – How healthy are you?

The recent economic crunch has caused many people to not only tighten their belts, but also lose sleep: a recent Canadian study found that nearly a quarter of us are tossing and turning at night over money worries.

Did you know that in addition to keeping you awake at night, financial stress and worry can also actually make you sick?

Recent studies have shown that when people are dealing with financial stress, they are more likely to suffer from high blood pressure, severe depression, back pain, headaches, digestive problems, and heart attacks. These situations can keep you off work, frequenting the doctor’s office and add to financial pressures. In addition, these financial worries weigh on your mind and can affect your job performance – distracting your focus and preventing you from doing your best work.

Finances can cause a lot of stress and anxiety for people. Whether you are living paycheque to paycheque or are concerned about setting enough money aside for retirement, this stress can add up and negatively impact your mental health as well. A recent study revealed that 39% of those surveyed felt financially stressed multiple times per day and 38% lose sleep over financial worries.

This shows that money problems often are one of the greatest sources of stress. It can happen that we get in over our heads and then encounter difficulties in finding ways to get back out. Coping with paying bills, managing debts and trying to save for the future can be very worrisome.

Some suggestions to aid in lessening the stress:

  • Budgeting – For most people, drawing up a budget is the best way to ease financial stress. By keeping a record or log of exactly where your money goes each day you can see where you are able to trim back some spending.
  • Set up a schedule and method of bill payment that ensures you pay your bills on time every month.
  • Make sure to allow for variable expenses and unexpected things like car repairs.
  • Seek out help through Debt and Financial Counselling.

Our financial health is closely linked with our mental and physical health. By taking steps to take control of your money, you will be, in turn, helping to take care of your body, mind and spirit.

Dawne Helischauer / Sr. Benefits Specialist / PEO Canada


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