It's official: Money is Stressful. The APA's annual Stress in America survey has found that money is the top source of stress for American adults in the U.S. But you probably knew that already. Few of us ever feel we have enough, and debt levels indicate that the feeling is justified. Because we develop our beliefs and attitudes about money early in life, we tend to be less aware of their origins and by extension, how they affect us and our relationships with others. A better understanding of those underlying feelings can help set goals and mitigate stress.
First, begin by acknowledging realities which may influence your relationship with money:
• By nature or experience, people tend to be spenders or savers. Unhealthy spending to fulfill unconscious needs can lead to debt and more stress; conversely, obsessive saving can lead to a life of deprivation.
• Money is central to our sense of security and life satisfaction. Is it your most important measure of success, or are other factors equally crucial?
• Many avoid addressing their finances. Do you have an overall financial plan to achieve your life goals? Are you addressing that plan, or ignoring it and hoping it will just resolve itself?
• People tolerate different levels and types of financial risk.
Next, examine your personal relationship to the greenback. Consider questions such as:
• Who influenced your ideas about money?
• Have you ever lost a friend over money?
• Is money a source of conflict with your spouse or partner?
• Do you feel money-safe or money-insecure?
To assist in this exercise, complete these questionnaires at your own pace:
• To help you examine the role money has played in your life and how you manage it, CLICK HERE
• To better understand the changes you want to make to improve your financial health, CLICK HERE
• To identify the emotions behind the things you want most CLICK HERE
• To determine your tolerance for risk CLICK HERE
Finally, make an appointment with a professional counselor:
Because feelings of regret, anxiety, jealousy or loss can result from decisions about money, examining your history with it is a good start. But money habits and attitudes don't change overnight. It takes not only a willingness to think about money but a concentrated effort to change behavior. If you'd like to work with an EAP counselor or find additional resources for your financial questions, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A divorce, a second marriage, the birth of a child, a relocation or a new job. If any of these events has happened to you in the past year, you should review your beneficiaries. According to the The Wall Street Journal, failing to update documents can create a mess for your heirs.
Increasingly, investors have the option of naming beneficiaries directly on a wide range of financial products. The appeal: When the account owner dies, the assets go directly to the beneficiaries named on the accounts, bypassing the sometimes long and costly probate process. The problem: Because these beneficiary designations override your will, they need to be carefully coordinated with your overall estate plan. To read the full article, READ MORE