You can be going about your life, doing just fine, and all of a sudden it creeps in.
Is it stress? Is it fear? Either way, it can feel debilitating and prevent you from taking action to solve your money problems. Maybe you aren’t making enough money in your business yet. Maybe the savings you have been relying on is running low. Maybe the debt numbers have grown so large that they can no longer be ignored.
When anxiety shows up, it is your body’s way of alerting you, “This isn’t working! This needs a solution!”
While anxiety might have good intentions, it’s not useful in helping you find the best solutions to the underlying money problems. You need a clear head and your creativity on tap to figure out how to bring in more money this month or figure out how to stretch your savings a little further than expected.
Money anxiety can keep the best solutions hidden from you, making you feel foggy and stuck.
That is why it is so important to take steps to alleviate money anxiety when it starts to creep in. Because you need to get back to solution mode ASAP!
Curing money anxiety is a personal endeavor. It’s going to look a bit different for everyone. You have to try some things, see what works and keep a list of solutions that work for you. This list is curated from my personal experience, and what has worked for my clients. But ultimately, the journey is yours. You have to discover what activities get YOU re-focused and ready to take on the world.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
1. Take away the power of the worst-case scenario
Crunch the numbers, using the worst-case scenario. (e.g. Worst case scenario I have to use my credit cards this month to make ends meet. Or worst case scenario the business fails and I have to take that job I know I won’t like). Often, while the worst-case scenario might suck, it does not threaten your survival. It’s merely a detour from the path you were expecting to take.
2. Create a money affirmation
Turn your money problem into a money affirmation. Can’t find a job? Your affirmation becomes, “The perfect job is finding its way to me.” Repeat it often, post on your fridge, put it somewhere visible to remind you daily.
3. Clean your desk/office space
Physical clutter makes your brain feel cluttered. Take a few minutes to get re-organized, catch up on tasks you have been neglecting and make your desk or office space presentable again. (No desk or office? Clean up your emails or the desktop on your laptop!)
4. Walk in nature
Move your body. Disconnect from the world for a while. Remember that the world is so much bigger than money problems.
5. Find gratitude in the everyday
A hot cup of coffee in the morning. Your favorite comedy on TV at night. The flowers blooming in your yard. We often overlook the small moments of abundance in our everyday lives. You don’t need a formal gratitude practice. You just need 5 seconds to pause and appreciate the moment.
6. Read a novel
Maybe you prefer a magazine or a podcast. But personally, I have found a feel-good novel will do wonders for my psyche and my creative spirit. (Also, I stock up on books at the library so it’s budget friendly!)
7. Spend a little money
Don’t underestimate the power of small upgrades to make you feel abundant in your life. Recently, when I was battling a bout of money anxiety, I bought some fresh, new dish towels for my kitchen. I hadn’t bought dish towels in years! Hanging stain free towels in a clean kitchen, that felt so abundant! And it only cost $5.
8. Use the stuff you have been saving. What are you saving it for?
Brew the expensive tea you have had too long, use the nicest bath stuff you own, wear the fancy sweater! Using these types of items that we are ‘saving’ feels luxurious and reminds us of how much we already have. Using these things to help shift your money mindset is putting them to the best possible use! Remember, there is always more where that came from.
9. Talk to a human
A coach, a friend, a family member. Talking about anxiety out loud takes away some of its power. Plus, a confidant will be able to help you get out of the fog and see solutions you might not have considered.
You have a lot going for you.
You are going to be just fine.
You just need that reminder sometimes. So maybe your list will look a little different than the one here. That’s great. I want you to curate your ‘path out of money anxiety’ list to work for you. Keep your list in your journal, or somewhere easy to access when the anxiety creeps in again.
Because money anxiety comes for all of us at one point or another. But when it comes, don’t let it hang around for too long. Because you have work to do, a life to build and an abundant world to enjoy. And that is what you should choose to focus on.