Habitually worrying about financial problems as you lie awake at night to catch some sleep is an exhausting experience that can affect your mental health. Many people are not aware that there is a significant correlation between mental health and financial stress. While mental illnesses such as anxiety and depression are caused by varying factors, financial stress has been established as the most common cause.

What Exactly is Financial Stress?

Financial stress pertains to the worry that individuals feel when it comes to problems arising from the lack of means to meet or settle financial obligations. While financial experts also refer to it as mortgage stress, it’s a type of financial stress experienced by households that need to use over 30% of the family’s total income to pay for mortgage amortizations as they fall due.

Financial advisors suggest that one way to keep financial stress from taking over your life is to recognize it by recognizing the following signs of financial stress:

  • Insomnia;
  • Mood swings;
  • Frequent quarrels with loved ones over money matters;
  • Urge to inflict self-harm;
  • Increased use of alcoholic substances and;
  • Increased or loss of appetite.

Ways to Overcome Feelings of Financial Stress

Now more than ever, financial problems have become common and can happen to any individual as was the case by the unexpected events of the pandemic. While many lost their jobs, fell ill or lost their breadwinner to COVID-19, the sudden loss of financial capability had caused tremendous mental stress on many families. While financial solutions cannot be readily available, you can at least take steps that can help alleviate some of the anxieties that has been causing you financial stress:

1.  Speak to your creditors about creating a new payment plan;

2.  Communicate with your lender about options for mortgage restructuring or credit card consolidation;

3.  Seek help from an independent financial counsellor and;

4.   Ask help from a financial planner in creating a realistic budget that would meet the new payment schemes.