According to the annual Stress and wellbeing report by the Australian Psychological Society, finances top our list of worries. In 2015, 45% of respondents rated personal financial issues as a significant stress. Australian employees across all industries, income levels and job roles are feeling financially stressed. Stress leads to feelings of lower life satisfaction, less engagement with others and lower work performance.
Financial stressors include high levels of bad debt, worries about the ability to meet repayments if unexpectedly out of work due to sickness or job loss, retirement and lack of savings. Many households struggle to make a budget and are spending more than they earn.
Physical and psychological stress can lead to mental and physical health issues, relationship and family breakdown, drug and alcohol abuse, as well as social isolation. Health concerns can then lead to further financial stress and uncertainty.
Most people try to cope with money problems by putting it out of their minds, as thinking about the future is too distressing. Negative feelings about money often build up, leading to feelings of hopelessness.
The good news is that there is a great deal of help at hand. The first step is to face up to the fact that you need some help and just take things one step at a time.
Sign up for my free resource “Ten Ways to Reduce Financial Stress” on my website for ideas on how you can take action to reduce financial stress.