The National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC) recently held a poll on their website. They found that nearly 80 percent of respondents admitted to losing sleep at night due to financial worries. That’s an enormous amount of people losing sleep over money.
Of course that number is a little skewed, given that respondents were visiting the website of a financial counseling organization, but skewed or not, any number of people losing sleep over money is too many. Why?
- Worrying doesn’t accomplish anything. Harsh, but true. Most people recognize this, but it’s still human nature to worry. There’s nothing wrong with worrying and you certainly shouldn’t feel bad about it, but all too often we allow worrying to become the thing we do – the only thing we do. Rather than taking proactive steps towards a solution, we let worry bolt us to the floor. So you’re allowed to be worried – but you have to do something about your problems, too.
- If you can do something, do it. The fastest way to reduce your anxiety about money (or anything) is to do something. Even it’s just talking to someone, taking real action makes you feel better almost instantly. If you can’t sleep, get out of bed and do something. Make a plan. Pick up the phone. You’ll be surprised how much easier it is to sleep with a little positive progress at your back.
- If you can’t do anything, you can’t. One of the hardest aspects to master when it comes to worrying is the ability to let it go. Once you’ve done everything you can to improve the situation, you have to sit back and accept that there isn’t anything further you can do. That’s incredibly hard, but losing sleep over things you can’t control does nothing positive for anyone.
- The good outweighs the bad. Problems, including money problems, have a way of occupying exponentially more space in your mind than they really deserve. That’s not to say that your problems are inconsequential, but it’s important not to let your worries and fears drive all of the good stuff out of your mind. Because there is good stuff – there’s always good stuff. We just tend to let the bad or less-amazing things in life overshadow the positive. So flip the script. When you find yourself worrying and you’ve done all you can, turn your focus to all the secretly awesome things in your life.
- Help is available. Asking for help isn’t easy. That’s understandable. But sitting on your problems, losing sleep, and suffering whatever other symptoms of stress and anxiety isn’t great either. Talk to your family. Talk to your friends. Get your problems out in the open. Don’t be afraid to reach out for professional help. Here at MMI, we offer counseling for a number of financial issues, including debt problems, student loan problems, foreclosure prevention, and much more. We can provide expert advice and guidance. Whether you come to us or someone else, the important thing is that you reach out.
Money is just a part of your life. When it’s tight or when you struggle, it might feel like the biggest part of your life. But you don’t do yourself any favors by letting money worries push everything else aside. So take action! You might not be able to stop worrying altogether, but you can do a lot to control those worries. At the very least, you’ll be able to sleep a lot better at night.