Make Healthy Money Choices During Tough Times
There’s no doubt that 2020 has been a challenge for everyone. And when you have lost a job, had your hours cut, or have dealt with health issues, it’s even more important to make healthy money choices during tough times.
Be Realistic About Your Finances
If you are worried about paying your bills, you are not alone. Many people are feeling anxious about what the future holds. New evidence shows that depression and anxiety are increasing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the results of a survey released by Mental Health America (MHA). Trying to make ends meet can cause some emotional panic. As a result, learning how to manage physical, psychological, and emotional health helps to maintain a clearer vision during any economic crisis.
One of the primary ways you can combat this challenge is to be realistic about your finances. Cut back on nonessential expenses. In today’s world, many of our “wants” are not really “needs.” Determine which “wants” could be trimmed back. Review which subscriptions for software, TV, magazines or programming can be eliminated or replaced with free versions.
Worried About Money: Negotiate with Lenders
Secondly, you can reach out to credit card companies to get extensions or lower your monthly payments. Maybe you can defer a month’s rent or not pay rent for three months and add that balance to be spread out over the next nine months of your lease. If you are paying a high interest, be sure to check out Money Magazine’s top 20 cards for 2020. Create some breathing room in tough times, so you can focus on more effective ways to stop overspending, create a budget, and grow towards solvency.
Healthful Research & Create a Budget
Another technique for making healthful choices during tough times is to stay informed. Don’t get obsessed with all the media and pundits sharing their opinions. Turn your worries into action steps with healthy money choices. Reach out to friends, and explore what resources are available to you.
If you do not have a budget, now is the time to create a simple plan. Start with the essential needs: housing, medical costs, food, and transportation. One of the benefits of writing down a budget is knowing how much money you need to live. Once you have a “bare-bones” list of necessities, you can allocate your income to those needs. Grocery expenses can be pared down by shopping at discount stores. To save money, never shop when you are hungry. Make a list ahead of time, and shop once a week. Plan a week’s menu, buy in bulk to repackage at home, and shop with a calculator to stay within your budget.
Avoid Additional Credit in Tough Times
It is tempting to get an additional credit card to pay your bills but this could result in other debt in the long run. Continue to make your rent or mortgage payments on time. Another win-win solution is to maintain the minimum payments on your credit cards. If you have a little extra money, use that extra cash to build an emergency savings fund. This fund will bring quicker results than you think. You will benefit by having a stronger savings habit when the economy recovers.
Healthy Money Choices Build Financial Freedom
Uncover what works for you and your family financially and build a personal sense of worth using the currency of hope! You are more than the value of your wallet. Strengthen your ties to friends and family because strong emotional relationships can carry us through. Make healthy money choices during tough times and come out ahead achieving long term goals with practical applications!