Keren Smedley 28th July 2017
Many of us I think, assumed in our youth that we would have enough money once we started work to feel comfortable and that by the time we reached our 40s or 50s we would be secure and relaxed about our finances. We saw ahead of us a retirement on a steady, stable pension which whilst not making us wealthy would enable us to have the life we wanted as we got older.
For most of us it hasn’t turned out like this. Savings and pensions are no longer stable and many will be unable to live on them. Relationships may not have worked out as expected so you find yourself in a less secure financial position.
As we move into a new era with Brexit and with the world economy not being very certain many of us find ourselves really worried about money.
How we feel about our financial situation is as important as the situation itself. The first step is to recognise that you’re in a negative space regarding money which can then only lead you to further anxiety.
When you find yourself worrying about finances, there is a technique that can help you change your thoughts and feelings. The ‘trick’ is to focus on something else. Try concentrating on the things you’ve got:
- Find some paper and a pencil and take yourself off somewhere quiet where you can sit without being disturbed.
- Write down 10 things you cherish – your children, memories of holidays, your garden and so on.
- Now ask yourself if these are more important than money.
- Would you give up any of them for a bit more money? Even if the answer is yes for one or two, I don’t expect they’re in the top five. Focusing on what you’ve got rather than what you haven’t will immediately make you feel better.
Now think of practical solutions you can take:
- Find a professional financial adviser to talk to who will be able to help you. See whether your anxieties are real or imagined as well as assisting you in managing your money more effectively.
- Consider if there are things you can practically do so you can reduce your outgoings a little, for example shop for your vegetables at the market rather than the supermarket, invite friends to supper rather than eating out, walk to the shops/ station rather than driving your car.
- Always put your small coins in a jar at the end of each day. You’ll be amazed how quickly it mounts up. Once you’ve saved a few pounds, buy yourself a small treat.
Best wishes, Keren
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