We don’t really talk about money, even though we think about it often. This is especially true when we experience financial difficulties, like a job loss or an unexpected expense. When things like this happen, money is top of mind, but we often keep the worry inside, which leads to financial stress. Just like any other type of stress, financial stress can keep you up at night and take a toll on your health and wellbeing.

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Start reducing financial stress by taking these important steps:

  1. Diagnose your financial problem. The first thing you should do is confront your challenges. Start by examining all your finances and making a list of things that need to be addressed.
  2. Find a treatment. Once you know the financial troubles you face, create a plan with detailed steps on how to resolve them by analyzing your income and expenses. Look for ways to reduce expenses and increase income, if possible. Once you have a handle on your income and expenses, create a monthly spending plan and stick to it.
  3. Get your debt under control. Write down the debt you have and the interest rates you’re being charged. Make a plan to pay down higher-interest debt first and pay more than the minimum amount due.
  4. Prepare for emergencies. You never know when you’ll experience a major life change or expense. The best way to protect yourself financially is to have an emergency fund. If you don’t have one, start by opening a new savings account and contribute a fixed amount of money each pay period. This will help you get in the habit of saving and as your financial situation improves, you can increase the amount you save.
  5. Maintain good financial health. Reviewing your finances isn’t something you should just do once a year. You need to constantly analyze your income, expenses, savings, and debt to ensure you’re sticking to the plans you set.

Treat yourself to better financial health and wellbeing by taking these steps today.