What is Financial wellbeing?
It’s when your mental wellbeing affects the way you deal with money.
If you’re feeling depressed, stressed, anxious, or experiencing mania it can make it difficult to manage money. For example:
- you might find it harder to make budgeting and spending decisions.
- to make yourself feel better, you might spend money you don’t have on things you don’t need and then regret it later.
- you might feel anxious or stressed about talking on the phone, going to the bank or opening your bills.
- the symptoms of a mental illness might cause you to behave impulsively like spending a lot of money all in one go.
With the big increase in energy bills and the hike in the cost of living plus fuel prices, we know these problems are common amongst many.
We want to help you tackle any money worries so have created a new quarterly Financial Wellbeing communication to try and be there for you with ideas and advice we’ve found which might be useful.
If you missed our first email you can read it here.
This edition includes advice on debt, budgeting, energy bill grants, and shopping discounts.
Most importantly we want you to know it’s normal to experience money worries, but it’s better to face them rather than ignore them and there is help out there to support you on this.
We’ve created the below list of additional ideas you can do to get your finances back on track.
- Online shopping sites often remember credit card details to make it easier for you to buy things when you go back to them. If you feel you’re at risk of making impulsive spending decisions you will later regret, removing this auto-filled information from your web browser can help slow things down and give you the chance to think about whether you really want or need what you were planning to buy. Google ‘how to clear your cookies’ to find out how to do this.
- Remove shopping apps that send you push notifications with offers you might be tempted to use from your phone.
- You can also use free online tools (such as BlockSite) that let you temporarily block shopping sites for as long as you want. These might be useful if you know you sometimes spend more than you can control or feel comfortable about.
- Keep your wallet out of easy reach of the sofa. This makes impulsive spending more difficult.
- Your credit card company or bank can also help you in lots of ways. They might agree to temporarily freeze your card when you feel like your spending is getting out of control, change the amount of money you can take out of cash machines each day or switch off cash withdrawals altogether.
- If you’re at risk of applying for credit and can’t afford to do so, you can let potential lenders know that you don’t want them to lend to you. You can do this by adding a ‘note’ to your credit file. Reference agencies Experian and Equifax offer this service.
- Think about getting rid of your credit cards if you find them too difficult to manage. You can get free, confidential debt advice if you’re worried about how you’ll pay your cards off.
- Make a budget that shows all the money you have coming in and all the things you spend it on. This Budget Planner tool only takes ten minutes to fill out and it analyses your results to help you take back control of your household spending.
- When you’re feeling better, think about putting money aside for times when you might not be able to focus on saving. This might be in a savings account, a jam jar account or piggy banking. Find out more in this guide Managing your money using the jam jar approach.