10 Tips to Managing Your Money in a Pandemic
The world is upside down right now.
With so much uncertainty in the economy and with job security even I have had a panic spiral or two.
But I have the tools and the training to recognize the spiral, flip it, and reverse it. (see what I did there?)
Anyway… I turn around my spiral by focusing on my mindset.
When you are in the panic spiral number crunching the what-if scenarios, there is no amount of number crunching that will make you feel SAFE.
Peace of mind comes from a clear, focused head. THEN you do the work.
So here are my top 10 money tips (5 mindset tips first, 5 practical tips second) to managing your money during a pandemic:
**disclaimer** The world boils down to two groups of people right now. Those who have lost significant income, and those who haven’t. If you have lost significant income due to the pandemic, I need you to realize you are in survival mode. These steps are still important and valid for you but they might feel harder, and you might not be able to do all the steps like saving or giving. That is FINE, you are in SURVIVAL mode. Just get to the other side, sister, you are doing great.
1. Ask the question, “How can I see this differently?”
When I started asking myself this question, I started to find the peace I was searching for. I started to separate fact from fiction. Anxiety from truth. This question alone helped me show up as a leader in my business and helped me process the ‘what-if’ financial scenarios I had been spinning out on.
2. Evaluate the normal you want to go back to
What are you missing during this time? What are you not missing? I personally cannot wait to go back to a restaurant. My friend Jackie couldn’t care less about that. From your income sources to how you spend, now is the time to get in touch with your values and strategize how to align your financial plan to them.
3. Work on your money mindset
When I know I need to shift my mindset it involves reading an inspirational book, shutting down social media, getting outside, moving my body, and loud music. Truly, mindset work often looks just like self-care. Figure out what works for you, and execute regularly so you can show up in your life and make the best creative decisions for your finances (and life) right now.
4. Find gratitude
I resuscitated my gratitude practice during the pandemic to help support my mindset. Each night I write 5 things I’m grateful for. Often, they end up being the highlights of my day. It’s an easy practice to start and pays huge dividends.
5. Give yourself a huge break
I love the quote I have been seeing on social media, “It’s a pandemic, not a productivity contest.” Take care of yourself, take action as needed and stay inspired, and then watch the Netflix shows with a glass of vino. (Schitt’s Creek has been my pandemic go-to)
6. Understand the resources available to you
From stimulus checks to business loans to unemployment can I just tell you that EVERYONE IS FIGURING THIS OUT TOGETHER. A lot of it is confusing and overwhelming (even for money people!). Take it a baby step at a time, get some help, don’t give up, and go get what is due to you.
7. Cut unnecessary expenses
It’s a great time to evaluate what matters to you and what doesn’t. If you have lost income, clearly you are cutting expenses to make ends meet. But evaluating your expenses right now is a benefit to everyone. Have you been watching cable? Do you really need new clothes right now?
8. Build cash reserves
If you haven’t lost income, you are likely saving money from normal life being canceled. Get that money into a savings account! As balances grow in checking accounts you will end up wasting it on something down the road. Trust me. Just get your excess cash to savings ASAP.
9. Spend intentionally
How have you supported your local community members lately? Especially if you have not lost significant income, I feel so strongly that it is our DUTY to each other to buy local, get some curbside takeout, help keep our friends in business, and donate to the food banks.
10. Build / diversify your income
Seemingly overnight our world shifted. It was a huge reminder to me that the biggest financial protection you can have is diversification in your income sources. Is it time to pivot your offerings in your business, build a side hustle, get an income property? Now is a great time to take care of future you by building plans to start new income streams in your life.
Bottom line: You’re doing great. Wherever you are, whatever you are going through. Money can feel heavy right now. But it can also feel like an opportunity to shift into a new normal, into what you were meant for all along.