Don’t Let Money Worries Rob You of Sleep

Money worries are rampant among Americans.

A recent survey by Ohio State University found that 70% of the nearly 19,000 students surveyed reported feeling stressed about money. Half worried about not having enough money for daily expenses, and 60% were anxious about the cost of tuition.

But it’s not just college-age adults who worry about money. Another recent survey by CreditCards.com found that 62% of Americans were losing sleep over their financial problems.

The most common fears they expressed were not having enough money for retirement and educational expenses. If you find that money worries are keeping you up at night, here are some steps you can take:

1. Ask yourself some questions.
The first one should be, “What are you really worried about?” Then ask yourself, “Is it something I have control over?” If it is something within your control, take steps to fix the problem. Living within your means can help you get on track to mend most money problems;

2. Develop an action plan.
When there is a specific money problem nagging at you, it’s easy to avoid dealing with it and simply hope your circumstances will change. But to truly change the situation, confront it head on. Sitting down and taking an honest look at your finances, and developing a plan of action will help you feel more in control of your future;

3. Take specific measures today that will reduce your stress in the long run.
Set aside a little money each paycheck—no matter how small—to begin an emergency savings account. Strive to put away enough to cover at least three months’ expenses; ideally, stretch it to as many as eight months. Don’t get hung up on how big this number is—just steadily keep adding to your fund. Develop a side gig—such as selling belongings or handmade items online or leveraging a skillset like freelance photography—so you have multiple income streams;

4. Meet with a financial adviser to make sure you’re saving enough for retirement.
Whether you open an (IRA) individual retirement account at your credit union or a 401(k), start saving now. If your company offers to match your contributions to your 401(k), contribute at least the amount you need to in order to get the match. If you don’t, it’s like leaving free money on the table; and

5. Visit Hopewell Federal Credit Union for help.
As not-for-profit financial cooperatives, every credit union’s mission is to help members become better stewards of their finances. We offer multiple services, educational opportunities, and trained staff to help you conquer your money problems.

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