Connecting the dots between our financial situation and our emotions is something that largely goes unnoticed (or at least not discussed).
In reality, our money affects everything – the roof over our heads, the food we eat, the bills we pay to keep our water running (and warm). And those are just our basic needs.
This list isn’t even touching base with the emotional complexities of ‘Keeping Up with the Joneses’ via social media, or feeling lost because you weren’t taught enough about finances at school.
What financial wellbeing means to you
If you take a moment, right now, to think about your own finances: how do you feel?
When you have all your financial-planning ducks in a row, you may feel pretty great and sense opportunity around every corner.
But if your finances are not in order, it can feel like the world is crashing down around you and that it’s all out of your control. And by no means would you be alone in feeling this way.
Money is emotional
This is where financial wellbeing comes into play (and if you’re unsure of what that means, you can read more about it here).
Money worries can build up at any time, even when they shouldn’t even be on our radar – like when we’re experiencing the hardships of serious illness or the death of a loved one.
If we don’t have plenty of financial freedom, or haven’t put some pre-planning in place (and let’s be honest, most of us don’t – 63% of people in the UK don’t have an active life insurance policy), we can predictably expect to feel an extra layer of anxiety or stress – on top of the actual issue at hand.
Our financial situations are not static. They ebb and flow over our lifetimes. And it’s perfectly normal then, to expect our emotions to move with those financial tides too.
The good thing is that, even though each of us will face highs and lows, acknowledging the link between finances and feelings is the first step towards caring for our financial wellbeing.
How financial wellbeing affects mental health
It’s fortunate that we live in a time where people are more willing to talk about their mental wellbeing than ever before. Sure, we may have a long way to go, but in recent years we have seen a shift towards an acceptance that taking care of our mental health is just as important as our physical health.
But what about our financial health? There’s no denying that money worries can have a big impact on our mental wellbeing, with 86% of people surveyed by the Money and Mental Health Policy Institute saying their financial situation had made their existing mental health issue worse.
Some common emotions associated with personal finances are:
- Feeling depressed
- Feeling anxious or worrying
- Feeling angry
- Feeling shame or guilt
These emotions aren’t exactly... positive, but how we feel about money is complex to say the least.
You may even find yourself creating coping methods to counteract these negative feelings, such as chasing the online shopping dopamine hit (hello new trousers that didn’t really make me feel any better).
Or you might isolate yourself to save money. But as lots of us experienced first-hand during the Covid-19 lockdowns of 2020 and 2021, not seeing friends and family can lead to more detrimental effects on your mental wellbeing.
How financial wellbeing affects physical health
We know that our mental health can cause physical symptoms, too. Continued stress caused by money concerns can be linked to:
- Panic attacks (which the NHS describes as a sudden onset of feeling disorientated, shaking, nausea, a dry mouth, rapid, irregular heartbeats, breathlessness, sweating and dizziness)
- Headaches and migraines
- A knock to your immune system causing frequent coughs, colds and infections
- Sleeping difficulties
- Weight changes
- High blood pressure
- Heart palpitations
- Heart disease
It’s not easy to see at first, but our financial wellbeing is deeply linked to our mental and physical health too. Together they are a three-piece puzzle of feeling good!
How to take care of your financial wellbeing
At Loqbox, we want to help you have a happier, healthier relationship with money. We know that life has enough hurdles as it is, without letting your finances dictate your overall health and wellbeing.
When our finances are in order, we can experience less stress (well, less stress than you would otherwise…). And you deserve a life that is as enjoyable as possible! Loqbox knows that good financial wellbeing, including a little more money know-how, can help to get you there.
So we’re here to help you understand how your finances affect your feelings. And once we’ve helped you master your money, you’ll be able to take control of your overall financial wellbeing and allow yourself to live a richer life – whatever that looks like for you.
If you’d like to learn to be more mindful about money, check out our safe space here.