If COVID has impacted your finances, you are not alone. Globally, the pandemic has devastated the economy. The stress of financial issues can wreak havoc on your mind and body. Fortunately, you can reduce stress and tweak your finances to improve your quality of life during these difficult times. A good financial plan starts with a goal.
Financial Goal Setting
The main question for financial goal setting is: Where do you want to end up? If your end goal is to save adequately for retirement while paying off debt, your strategies may look different than if your goal is to travel extensively and invest existing funds in high-yield stocks. Financial goals are unique to individuals and largely depend on your tolerance for risk. Most people benefit from a plan that sets specific, measurable goals. Set deadlines and earmark the funds you delegate to a particular goal. Keep the goal in front of you routinely so you stay on track as it is easy to get distracted from the big picture.
If you are in trouble financially, there are options for relief. Deferred loans, reduced payments, and options for aid during times of crisis can save you from bankruptcy. While it is incredibly stressful to be in trouble financially, there are ways out. Try not to allow your stress to dictate your life. Consider a variety of options to reduce your stress levels.
Find Ways to Reduce Stress
Self-care for stress reduction should involve physical and emotional outlets. Getting active can reduce physical issues that accumulate when cortisol levels are high. Just taking a walk can reduce stress levels, lower blood pressure, and increase oxygen levels. Workouts that offer a sustained elevated heart rate, such as aerobic exercise and jogging, can offer benefits for the heart, improve blood sugar levels, and reduce depressive symptoms.
Other stress reduction techniques that may help include mindful meditation, journaling, and talking to a trusted friend or counselor. Creative outlets such as painting or drawing can also distract your mind so that you can put things into perspective. Remember that this difficult time is temporary. There are many ways to access help and support, including working with financial consultants to reconfigure your budget.
Last but certainly not least, connect with a mental health professional if you feel you need to talk to someone about your situation. Sometimes, it helps to see a professional to overcome extreme stress and anxiety. Check your insurance plan to see if you’re covered for such treatment. If you’re on Medicare, visits to psychologists are covered under Medicare Plan B.
Hiring a Financial Consultant
Working with a financial consultant can offer great benefits. You can work on a budget plan, set up a debt payoff strategy, find ways to put money into savings, and set aside tax-free funds for retirement. Hiring a consultant for finances may not be as challenging as you think. Online freelance sites can help you find an independent consultant with experience. Check out reviews, fees, how soon a freelancer can start, and more prior to hiring.
Many people believe that they are not able to save for retirement because they have existing debt. Regardless, saving for retirement should be a priority. Talking with a wealth management advisor or financial consultant can help you identify methods of saving for the future that can be painless in your monthly budget. Financial stress can be overwhelming, but if you employ strategies for self-care and enlist the help of professionals, you will be back on track quickly.
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