Almost every American has had the experience of feeling stressed about money. It’s practically a universal experience! Whether you’ve felt burdened by debt, worried about family expenses, or your retirement fund, you likely know the feeling of financial stress.
Whatever the reason, financial stress can affect employee wellbeing, negatively impacting health, sleep, relationships and more.
5 Ways to Boost Financial Wellbeing During Financial Literacy Month
There's no better time than Financial Literacy Month (April of each year) to improve your financial wellbeing. Shifting your financial mindset with these four super simple exercises.
1. Support Your Other Areas of Wellbeing
If you're feeling especially overwhelmed by your financial stress, sometimes the best thing to do is to completely step away from it for a while and nurture your other areas of wellness.
Every person has eight key areas of wellness, according to SAMSHA. All eight are listed below, along with some ways to support that area of wellbeing.
- Occupational - This may include working at a job that you enjoy, growing in your career, and simply making money to support your family.
- Physical - This may include your eating, exercise, and sleep habits.
- Emotional - Your feelings and thoughts tie into your emotional wellbeing. Are you pushing down your feelings or allowing yourself to feel them? How intense are the emotions you are feeling? Are they positive, neutral, or negative? Meditation can help.
- Social - Are you part of a community? Are you nurturing your friendships and any other relationships in your life? Do your relationships help you recharge?
- Intellectual - This can include learning new skills, critical thinking, and solving complex problems.
- Spiritual/Purpose - Your spiritual wellbeing, or your purpose, may include an organized religion, finding your "why" in life, or other spiritual practices.
- Environmental - Spending time outdoors and appreciating nature nurtures this area of wellness.
- Financial - Are you planning for your financial future (and your financial now)? Does addressing your finances stress you out? Are you on your way to meet your financial goals?
If you take care of your wellbeing in multiple different areas, chances are you will be better equipped to tackle financial stress. For example, if you're feeling super stressed about finances, you can try meditating for a few minutes before talking to a financial coach or making your budget for the upcoming month.
2. Gratitude Journaling
It may seem silly but writing down the things we are grateful for, but it can create a powerful shift in mindset and improve employee wellbeing. Simply take out a journal, piece of paper, post-it note... whatever’s available! Then, write down ten things you’re grateful for. If you’re having a hard time identifying ten things, try focusing on what’s around you. It can be as simple as fresh air in your office, a coworker you appreciate, or what you have planned for lunch!
3. Step Away from the News
With so many news stories focusing on the economy, it can be difficult to stop thinking about money worries. Staying informed is important, but so is stepping away and giving yourself some space to focus on the positive! Choosing to read empowering local stories can help.
Another way is to get involved! Volunteering your time towards projects that benefit society can be an amazing way to shift your financial mindset and improve employee wellbeing.
4. Phone a Friend
Talking about your money stresses with a trusted friend can help ease the burden. Simply sharing your problems can release some of the pressure you may be experiencing. If you can invest in a financial planner, speaking to them about your finances can be an even more productive way to release money stress. Financial Literacy Month is a great time to start this habit!
5. Learn about Personal Finances
Financial Literacy Month is a great time to subscribe to some personal finance email newsletters, blogs, and video channels. Finances can seem a lot less scary when it is demystified.
Here are some great topics to start with:
- Home Buying or Renting
Improving your financial wellness with these five tips can completely change your relationship with finances. Next Financial Literacy Month, take a moment to reflect on how you have grown.
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