We are living in uncertain times. What we know about our daily schedules, our shopping habits, our social lives and even our budgets has been tossed aside – much like our beauty and grooming routines. But one thing is certain: the need to have money. You may have felt the impact of COVID-19 on your wallet – and that can add to the stress you might otherwise be feeling during the crisis.
Your mental health, your physical health and your financial health are connected. Have you ever noticed that? So, although these changes are all temporary, it’s important to remember three things:
- Your financial health, like mental health requires TLC.
- Your financial challenges can be solved.
- There are effective ways to get help. You’re not alone.
Your self-worth is not your net worth.
Repeat this mantra: You are not your bank account.
That’s likely easier said than done, but it’s important to know that you’re not defined by your finances. The world is in a state that we have never seen in our lifetime; instead of feeling down about having to cut costs, feel positive about addressing your budget and taking control over what you can:
- Reprioritize your spending: Shift your budget to cover only essentials, and postpone any other purchases.
- Identify wants versus needs: Involve your family by asking them to list their most important expenses first, so you can prioritize how you allocate money.
- Talk it out: Connect with a friend or family member. Or maybe your insurance covers virtual therapy sessions. It can be such a relief to talk to someone.
- Check with your bank: Book a call to discuss all of your financial options and ask for advice that makes sense for your family.
- Make your payments: If you can continue to make your mortgage and credit-card payments, do it. Incurring interest can have a long-term impact on your financial – and mental – well-being. If you can’t make your payments, ask your bank about new payment deferral options. But remember these options are a deferral of payments, not a forgiveness of payments and you will have to pay the amount in full with interest at a later date.
- Make a plan: Being intentional on how you will manage will go a long way to putting you in control, and in turn, improve your confident and mental health.
Don’t panic, don’t ignore it, and don’t turn to retail therapy
We are facing unprecedented financial changes across the country – no one could have seen this coming. So don’t panic. Panicking causes you to make rash decisions like choosing to buy on credit with high interest rates or taking out a payday loan. Neither should be your solution to pay for your family’s needs. Weigh all options so decisions you make today don’t add to your debt tomorrow. A Licensed Insolvency Trustee can help you understand what those are, and where to find them.
Don’t ignore your problems either. Ever notice how when you finally tackle something you’ve been avoiding (hello, purging your storage closet) you feel so much better when it’s done? Have faith – you’ll get the same feeling by understanding your new financial situation and how to manage it.
Don’t make yourself feel better by buying “stuff”. Not only will it fill a gap for just a short period of time, you’ll be spending money on non-essentials which will have a ripple effect on your bank account.
Feel good about feeling in control
Taking even small steps forward will help you feel good, you’ll be productively working on your financial well-being, you’ll begin to put things into perspective and you’ll even regain some control that you may have felt you lost.
If you are having trouble meeting your financial obligations, one way to regain control of your finances is talking with a Licensed Insolvency Trustee. Licensed Insolvency Trustees can provide trusted financial advice that will make a difference. With Grant Thornton Limited, you can speak with an expert who will help you weigh all of your options for managing your debt so you can make the most informed choice possible for your family, your financial health and in result your mental health. It’s important to talk to someone you trust. Get a feel to see if this path is right for you at no cost, and with no commitment. Book a free confidential phone or video consultation at www.gtdebtsolutions.com.
The pandemic will end, and life will return to some sort of normal. In the meantime, let Grant Thornton Limited help you take care of your debt, so you can focus on what matters most. Learn more about your options from a government-regulated professional you can trust at www.gtdebtsolutions.com.