4 ways your financial wellness is influencing your physical and mental health

4 ways your financial wellness is influencing your physical and mental health

– Chanelle Taylor (Director, Cornerstone Financial Planning)

Money makes the world go around and whether we like it or not, it’s a massive part of our everyday lives. With increasing financial pressure both at work and at home, the effects of financial wellness on our minds and bodies are becoming more and more relevant. Unfortunately, many people have no idea what these effects are or that improving their financial wellness could be a major source of relief.

Here are a few ways in which your financial wellness can affect your physical and mental health as well as some tips and advice on how to combat these negative effects.

Increased stress and anxiety

“Will I be able to pay my rent? My children’s school fees? What about my outstanding debt?”

Uncertainty causes anxiety by default, but when money is involved it’s a whole new ball game. If any derivative of the above sounds familiar, you have experienced the stress and anxiety that comes with low financial wellness, over indebtedness and lack of proper financial planning.

This increased level of stress may cause you to be short with co-workers, family and friends leading to unnecessary conflict and even more unhappiness. Increased muscle tension, especially in your shoulders and back, can lead to pain which only adds to the discomfort.

A good way to combat this is to look at your finances holistically and objectively. Tackle one thing at a time, starting with the item(s) that cause the most anxiety and stress. Don’t make new debt, curb your spending and set up a realistic budget and stick to it.

Difficulty concentrating on work and family

It’s very hard, near impossible, to concentrate properly on work or family when your finances are in shambles – it’s only human. All you think about is money, constantly trying to find ways to fix the problem and thinking the worst. This thought process will emotionally and mentally drain you and may cause you to lose your job, that promotion you were chasing and even your family.

Fight this way of thinking by ensuring you make a concerted effort to tackle and improve your financial wellness. Once you have a plan in sight, you will be able to see the light at the end of the tunnel which will allow to relax a little, feel less helpless and focus on the things that are most important to you.

Insomnia

Sleepless nights over money, who hasn’t had those? Although linked tightly to stress and anxiety, insomnia brings with it a new set of problems. Not only does it create a vicious cycle – the more tired you are, the more stressed and anxious you get and the more stressed and anxious you get, the less you sleep – it can have massive long-term effects in your body and mind. Chronic lack of sleep may aid in the development of an irregular heartbeat, high blood pressure and even stroke and diabetes.

The effects on your mental health are equally dangerous as constant tiredness may lead to accidents while driving or working. Insomnia can also cause depression, weight gain and will almost surely impair your judgement. By tackling your financial problems and making a plan to improve them, you will be able to sleep sound again and live a much healthier and happier life.

Digestive problems

When you are constantly anxious and stressed about money, your appetite may go out the window. Add increased muscle tension to your stomach and intestines and you have a recipe for a digestive nightmare. Yes, your financial wellness may be linked to heartburn, indigestion, and although very rare, significant phycological stress can lead to stomach ulcers.

In addition to bad eating habits and increased tension due to stress, you may also feel that eating less is a way to save money and stretch your salary further but starving yourself is not the answer. Not even close.

Make sure that you eat healthily and regularly and that you drink enough water. Try to actively relax the muscles around your abdomen and avoid alcohol and food with a high acid content.  You cannot tackle your financial wellness on an empty or compromised stomach – eat before doing your budget!

If you are unsure about your personal financial wellness or if you need help optimising your budget and savings, be sure to contact Cornerstone Financial Planning today for expert financial planning advice. Also, remember to follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn for more interesting and useful content and share this article with your friends and family.

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