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How To Stop Worrying About Money

How to stop worrying about money

Money is a big stress factor for many people. So, if you’ve found yourself feeling stressed recently and wondering how to stop worrying about money, there’s a strong chance that your finances are to blame.

But constant concern about finances can lead to mental, emotional, and physical stress, so it’s important to get it under control.

Strategies that help you learn how to stop worrying about money are essential life skills that will help you build a happier and more satisfying life.

Why do I worry about money?

Common reasons include what role money played in your life growing up and also not feeling that you have enough income.

Money worries can happen to anyone at any time, but you’re more likely to feel anxious about money if you have:

Raised with deprivation

If you’ve ever had to go without food because money is tight, you will naturally be cautious about your spending habits to protect your resources.

You may even find yourself going to extreme lengths, such as cutting out some everyday items just to save some cash.

An unsteady or low income

You’re also much more likely to worry about money if you don’t have a lot of it. Fluctuating earnings can be tricky to manage, too, as you don’t know what you will be earning from one month to the next.

This can create extra pressure on regular expenses and household income streams.

Struggles with debt

If you have debt, you don’t have an option but to pay it. But that doesn’t always mean that you’re able to.

Overwhelming debt can bring extra financial stress to your life and cause lots of sleepless nights!

A sudden change in circumstances

Unexpected expenses, increasing debt, and job loss are the three biggest scenarios that can cause unplanned financial distress.

As these factors are out of your control, it can be extremely stressful.

Signs that you’re suffering from financial stress

Many of us are dealing with financial uncertainty and stress right now. It may not even be obvious that someone has money worries.

Knowing the signs to spot could save yourself and somebody else too.

Signs that money is having a serious negative effect on your life include:

Physical symptoms

Do you get a headache or experience tightness in your chest whenever you look at your bank account? You may be suffering from financial stress.

Discuss your symptoms with your doctor and seek advice on ways to prevent them.

Difficulty sleeping

Money concerns can even keep you awake at night. For a good night’s sleep, you need a clear mind, so try distraction techniques and mental puzzles to try and get yourself into sleep mode.

A breakdown of relationships

When times are tough, we often take our bad mood and frustration out on the ones closest to us. Money problems often cause a relationship to break down.

Talking and being open and honest with each other is really important if you want a person to be in your life long-term.

Withdrawing from social situations

Anxiety caused by financial worries can stop you from wanting to see family and friends. This is typically because you don’t feel like it.

But being on your own with your thoughts can make the situation worse, so try and mix with other people even when you don’t want to.

How to stop worrying about money: 15 Must-try tips

Feeling anxious or overwhelmed about your finances are normal emotions when worrying about money, but there are things you can do to help.

Here are 15 practical steps that you can take to boost your financial confidence and achieve greater life satisfaction.

1. Review your full financial picture

To understand how to stop worrying about money, having a clear understanding of where your money goes is so important.

A full financial picture will give you financial control, showing you how much money you have coming in, what outgoings you have, and how much you have left over.

Start by looking at your bank statements and receipts. Categorize your spending into essentials (food, bills, housing, etc) and non-essentials (eating out, clothes, coffee). This will show you exactly what you spend in each area and highlight areas where you could cut costs.

When you don’t have a firm grasp of your finances, the scariest thing is not knowing what is happening with your money. Once you have a clear picture, it’s much easier to handle.

2. Set goals

Want to know a quick way to learn how to stop worrying about money?

Setting yourself financial goals will help you get your finances under control by giving you something to aim for and a plan to help you achieve your financial wishes.

The best way to set goals that actually work is to make them SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound). Then ask yourself where you are financially right now.

What do you need to do to meet your goal? It could be clearing debt or boosting your earnings. Whatever it is, write a plan and stick to it.

Financial goals to inspire you

Here are some examples of financial goals that will help you stop worrying about money and relieve you of common financial difficulties.

3. Find a budget that works for you

To solve financial worries, you need to gain back control of your spending and manage your money well. And to do this, you need to budget.

Investing the time to manage your money better can pay off in the long run. It may help you stay out of debt and save for your future financial goals, which are two of the most common financial worries that people have.

To make a budget that you can successfully stick to, take the following steps:

Work out your income

This is everything you earn, minus tax deductions, health insurance, and retirement contributions. Don't forget to include any bonuses and benefits that you might receive!

Review your spending

Now you know what’s coming in, the next step is to see exactly where your hard-earned money is going.

List and categorize your spending areas by starting with your essential expenses, such as bills. Then list your non-essential spending, such as entertainment and eating out.

Choose the right budgeting plan for you

Find a budgeting method that you like – whether that’s the 50/30/20 method, zero-based budgeting, or envelope system.

There are many to choose from, but just because something works for your friend doesn't mean it's the right system for you. Keep an open mind and try a few.

Track progress

Seeing how much you’re saving each month is hugely motivational. It may surprise you just how much extra cash you’ve got from making small changes to your finances.

Make changes

A good budget is flexible to accommodate changing needs and to prevent you from overspending. Take a look at how effective your current budget is every three months or so and adjust it if you need to.

4. Educate yourself

The path to financial freedom and fewer money worries starts with you. Brushing up on your understanding of personal finance is the perfect place to start.

There are so many ideas to improve your personal finance knowledge! Here are four easy ways you can start straight away:

  • Sign up for financial newsletters
  • Tune in to finance podcasts
  • Read personal finance books
  • Learn from financial experts on social media

All of these things will help you feel happier and more confident about the financial decisions you make, so it’s worth investing the time to learn about money.

5. Don’t keep your finances a secret

Big secrets such as hidden debt can have a huge negative impact on our minds.

Talking about your money worries will help. The hardest part is how to start sharing your thoughts. The more you do this, though, the easier it becomes.

How to begin talking about money

There’s no right or wrong way to talk about your finances, but there are things you can do to make it easier.

Choose a time and place that you feel comfortable with. Be aware of your emotions and try not to let them stop you from talking.

Being upset is ok, but try to take a deep breath and organize your thoughts before you speak. Write some notes of key points to help you get your ideas across.

Most importantly, choose someone to talk to whom you can trust not to judge you.

6. Review your spending

A great way to practice how to stop worrying about money is to review your finances regularly.

You’ll feel more in control if you know exactly how much you earn compared to how much you spend each month. A few small changes to your spending can make the difference you need to stop feeling overwhelmed and start feeling confident with your money.

Throughout life, things happen that can cause your finances to drastically change.

Events such as a new job or having children often mean that your finances need to be adjusted. When this happens, it’s a good idea to pause, review your current situation and adapt accordingly.

7. Create a debt repayment plan

Whilst nobody wants to be in debt, it happens to a lot of people. What matters is how you handle it.

So, what’s the best way to tackle debt? Here are three strategies that work!

Get familiar with the amount of debt you have

If you don’t know the level of debt that you’re facing, you can’t start to reduce it.

Write a list of everything you owe and their values, including credit card bills, car payments, and any loan repayments. Confronting it and saying it out loud to yourself can be extremely liberating!

Get organized

Now, consider how you’re going to eliminate that debt. Becoming debt-free doesn’t happen overnight, but you can make good financial choices to start reducing the amount you owe.

Paying more than the minimum amount, paying your highest-interest debt first, and consolidating multiple debts are all ways you can pay off debt faster.

Don’t think about your debt too much

Easier said than done, right? Overthinking your money problems can cause low moods that prevent you from doing anything productive to help your finances.

Instead, allocate time to think about your debt. A good time to do this is when you are making your regular repayments. Don’t let debt consume your life!

Once you’re debt free, you’ll have a lot more money to invest, save or spend. And no more worries about how much interest you owe.

8. Stay active

Learning how to stop worrying about money isn’t just about your finances.

Exercise isn’t only good for our physical health – it can also benefit our finances too!

Working out releases those little endorphins that we know help to boost our mood. In addition to this benefit, exercising can make problem-solving easier - a win for dealing with finances!

Not a fan of exercise? You don’t have to be a hard-core gym goer to benefit from physical activity. Walking the dog or dancing around your bedroom is just as effective!

9. Embrace mindfulness

Practicing mindfulness techniques can help to reduce stress and anxiety caused by your finances.

How? Well, mindfulness is all about accepting yourself and your emotions and dealing with them in a way that doesn’t make you feel bad.

So if your current financial situation isn’t as good as you’d like it to be, don’t get caught up in the negatives.

Instead, take a deep breath and create a plan to turn the bad things into positives. Choosing to let go and stop stressing about money can be extremely empowering!

Being mindful also increases your self-awareness, which can really help you to rein in bad spending habits. Maybe it’s time to sit down and have an honest conversation with yourself about money.

Some great mindfulness techniques to try are:

Focusing on your breathing

Simply taking a deep breath before making a purchase can stop you from regretting your buying decisions and blowing your carefully considered budget.

Next time you get tempted by something in your favorite shop, try this technique and see how powerful it can be.

Visualize your goals

Once you truly know what you want to achieve, really picture the end result. It doesn’t matter if that’s a dream vacation or your first house, the important thing is you can see the prize for all your hard work.

Be kind to yourself

We are all human, which means it’s normal to lose focus now and again. Beating yourself up about it won’t help, though. Simply acknowledge what has happened, learn from it, and move on.

10. Invest smartly

Making wise financial decisions can also help you learn how to stop worrying about money. Investing allows you to grow your money quicker than if it sat in a bank account.

You then have the potential to reach your financial goals sooner!

Only invest in something you completely understand, though. Stocks, real estate, and index funds are good places for new investors to start.

Start the investing process

Before you part with your money, take some time to consider the risks and think about the impact of losing some or all of the money invested.

Ready to start investing? Take the first step by opening a brokerage account, which is basically a type of investment account that you can use to trade stocks, bonds, and mutual funds.

You can open a brokerage account online in less than 15 minutes.

11. Be aware of your weaknesses

Do you struggle to resist the temptation of a department store sale or the lure of that overpriced daily latte?

Everyone has financial weaknesses, and just like other bad habits, they can cause you harm.

Facing up to yours is the best thing you can do to stop negative financial habits and free yourself of money stresses.

Here’s how to do it:

Remove temptation

If overspending is your biggest weakness, pausing your shopping trips and unsubscribing from store emails is an effective way to rein in your spending.

It doesn't mean that you can never do some retail therapy again, but while you have money troubles, it's a smart move to make.

Think before buying

Before every significant purchase you make, ask yourself whether you actually need that particular item. You could always come back to it later to see if you still want it.

Chances are you've changed your mind and just saved yourself some dollars!

Only make purchases with cash

You’re more likely to spend less when using cash because you can physically see how much something is costing you. It's much easier to hand over a card than a stack of money.

Put the plastic away and switch to cash and see how much you can save!

12. Take time for yourself

Life isn’t just about paying off debt and saving money.

If you are on a tight budget, there are still many things you can do that won’t negatively impact your finances. Living frugally just means being smarter with your money, not stopping spending altogether.

Stuck for ideas? Try some of these low-budget activities:

  • Visit a library or museum
  • Go for a walk
  • Take advantage of happy hour drinks with friends
  • Download free apps
  • Take a drive around your local area

13. Start a side hustle

If you earned an extra $500 a month, would you worry less about money? Probably.

Side hustles are a smart way to boost your earnings and learn how to stop worrying about money. A great thing about side jobs is that they can be done in addition to your main career.

Side hustle ideas

Lots of side hustles can be done online and during evenings and weekends, giving you an additional flexible income stream. What’s even better about side hustles is that most people choose one that is aligned with their hobbies and interests.

For example, if you love animals, you could start up a pet-sitting business in your local area.

If DIY is more your thing, list your services on TaskRabbit and help people in your neighborhood while earning money.

Now all you need to do is decide what to do with all that extra money! Pay off credit card debt, save for a down payment on a home, or treat yourself to a well-earned vacation; the choice is yours.

14. Save for your future

It can be hard to think about what your finances will look like in the future when you might be struggling to pay the bills right now. But you need to plan if you want to achieve financial freedom later in life.

Here are some ideas to achieve this without compromising too much today.

Change bad lifestyle habits such as overspending

Use the money that you would normally spend in these areas to save instead. A great way to do this is by tackling one bad habit at a time.

Let's say you have a weakness for buying candy. Stop yourself from buying candy for a set amount of time and make a note of how much you save. This will motivate you to continue making good financial decisions.

Don’t ignore your 401(k)!

It may be years away, but the earlier you start saving, the more your 401(k) or other retirement investments will be worth when you retire. This means fewer financial worries when you stop working and a higher-quality lifestyle.

Set up automatic payments to yourself

Consider saving for your future as another monthly outgoing.

Commit to saving a set amount each month (even if it’s just a few dollars) by creating an automatic transfer into a separate savings account.

Before you know it, you'll have saved a decent amount that you can use to help you meet your financial goals.

15. Reflect

It’s important to take time to step back and reflect on your finances. This is because your lifestyle, priorities, and goals will change over time.

Reviewing your finances will allow you to factor new plans into your finances and adjust them accordingly.

For example, you may receive an inheritance which means you can retire earlier. Or you may decide that it’s time to settle down and have children. You can adapt your budget to save for this exciting life event and ease financial pressure later on.

Above all, regular financial planning is the best way to eliminate money worries and stress. It can help get rid of your concerns through planning and give you peace of mind.

Support and advice for money worries

Money troubles are nothing to be ashamed of! If you experience any suicidal thoughts, you must reach out for help.

Best places to find financial solutions

Speaking about your money problems can often help you put things in perspective and help you come up with solutions to financial issues that you hadn’t thought of before.

There is a lot of help available out there – all you need to do is reach out and ask for it. And you don’t even need to pay a financial advisor.

In addition to our free content and free courses here at Clever Girl Finance, here are some free resources you can leverage:

Operation Hope

Operation Hope is a non-profit organization that provides people with access to financial well-being coaches. These coaches provide guidance on creating a financial plan to navigate difficult financial situations.


Debt.org is an organization that focuses on helping people get out of debt by providing information on how to leverage debt consolidation plans, debt settlement plans, tax debt relief plans, and more.

The CFPB (Consumer Financial Protection Bureau)

The CFPB (Consumer Financial Protection Bureau) is a U.S. government agency that provides advice on debt, credit cards, mortgages, and other finance topics.

Citizens Advice

Citizens Advice is a government program that provides advice on government programs available to help pay for essential items like food, housing, and healthcare. They also share key tips on ways to get the most for your money.

Savvy Ladies

Savvy Ladies is an organization that has been around for over 20 years where women can get support via their financial helpline and volunteer support groups.

Your traditional bank or credit union

Most banks will offer their customers free financial advice and point them in the right direction based on their financial circumstances for further help.

Credit unions provide similar advisory services to your bank and are a great source of information.

Live a financially free life and stop worrying about money!

You're not alone if you're concerned about finances. It takes some know-how, practice, and patience to train yourself to learn how to stop worrying about money.

But it’s more than worth it!

Once you begin to set goals, understand your budget, and change your habits, you'll soon find that your finances are in much better shape.

As you continue to learn more about money, you will likely worry less and less and find that you're happier with your life and finances.

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