How to Cope with Money Worries

Poor mental health can make managing money hard and worrying about your finances makes your mental health worse so it can feel like a vicious cycle.

The ongoing Covid-19 crisis has only made the situation worse. According to the Legatum Institute the pandemic has pushed nearly 700,000 more people in the UK into poverty, with some 9.6 million people’s household incomes 25% or more below the official definition of poverty.

The Money Advice Service estimated that 22% of UK adults had less than £100 in savings – making them highly vulnerable to a financial shock.

And according to the Money Charity there are 454,000 more people unemployed in the UK in December 2020 than a year before.

Feeling low or anxious is normal when you’ve got yourself into debt and sorting out your finances may feel like an overwhelming task.

But you can take control of the situation one step at a time with these helpful tips:

  • Stay active

If you have more time because you’re not at work, or working from home do some form of exercise because physical activity can improve your mood. See our get fit for free for ideas on how to exercise without spending any money.

  • Face your fears

If you’re going into debt, get advice on how to prioritise your debts. Some people cut themselves off from friends and family and lose their confidence to travel. If this starts to happen, facing these situations will generally make them easier.

GOV.UK has information about: redundancy and dismissals, benefits and managing debt

  • Do not drink too much alcohol

For some people with money worries, alcohol can become a problem. You may drink more than usual as a way of dealing with your emotions or just to fill in time. But alcohol will not help you deal with your problems and could add to your stress.

Get tips on how to cut down on alcohol.

  • Do not give up your daily routine

Get up at your normal time and stick to your usual routine. If you lose your routine, it can affect your eating. For tips on healthy eating and how to eat well on a budget.

  • Talk to someone

You may find it hard to talk to your partner, friends or family about your debt or spending. StepChange has information on how to talk to your partner or family about debt. You may be tempted to borrow money from people, but then have problems paying the money back. The Money Advice Service has information on borrowing money from family or friends.  

  • Contact the agencies

Citizens Advice dealt with 1,680 debt issues every day in the year to January 2021.Its a good place to get information about benefits, how to deal with debt, what you’re entitled to if you’re made redundant and who to speak to if you’re at risk of losing your home.

You can also visit the Money Advice Service  (0800 138 7777), National Debtline (0808 808 4000) and Stepchange (0800 138 1111) for advice.

The charity Mind has a money and mental health section on its website, which includes advice on how to manage debt.

Finally Mental Health & Money Advice offers information and advice for anyone struggling with money because of mental illness, or whose financial situation is affecting their mental health.

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