5 Tips for Financial Well-Being:
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought up mental, physical, emotional, and financial challenges for many Americans. In a time of global crisis and economic downturn, it can be difficult to find a moment for self-care. While most of us associate self-care with physical well-being, we often forget that wellness applies to the state of our finances as well.
A recent study focused on young investors by the Financial Planning Association, Janus Henderson Investors and Investopedia found that 77% of respondents who felt financially secure experience lower stress levels. Daily stress levels, left unchecked, can lead to all sorts of negative physical and mental risks, including high blood pressure, heart disease and increased anxiety or depression.
The connection between financial security and emotional well-being is important – so we’re sharing some simple ways that you can prioritize your financial well-being and take time for financial self-care during your day.
Being very clear about your financial goals is a great first step to reducing stress and prioritizing your budget. This can be as simple as writing down a list of achievable money goals that you want to focus on. You can take action on these goals by automating transfers to a savings account or putting cash deposits in a secure home vault on a schedule that works for you.
Another method is to create different time frames for your goals, aligning deadlines for the short-term, mid-term and long-term. Alongside this, place a high, medium or low priority to your goal so you get a clear picture of what you want to accomplish. This can also make achieving your goals a little easier, and you’ll be able to celebrate more small successes along the way.
To get started setting a budget, you’ll want to know exactly how much money you have coming in each month. Grab your most recent paystubs from the previous month and write down how much you’re making after taxes. You’ll also want to know how much of your paycheck is going towards health insurance, retirement savings or a 401(k). If you are a freelancer, this might look a little different, but do your best to get a good estimate of how much money you have to work with each month.
Next, you’ll want to create a realistic budget. Having a monthly budget is a good way to stay in control of your money and feel confident about the financial decisions you make (plus you can use your income to its full potential). An easy way to start is to download a free budgeting app where you can track your income and expenses in one place. One good option is the Mint app, which syncs all your accounts and tracks your monthly bills.
Celebrating little wins along the way (like putting aside a certain amount of money each month in emergency savings) can make budgeting feel a little more like self-care each month.
Another simple way to get your finances on track is to take a good look at where you are borrowing money. If you have outstanding balances on your credit card, or you’ve recently taken out a loan, you may want to prioritize making payments towards these debts that could be racking up interest over time.
If you need to take out a new loan or make a big purchase, be sure to go back to your budget and see where you are able to allocate funds or save money on items of lesser priority.
If your employer offers a 401(k) match, be sure to sign up for it and start contributing enough to get the full match. If you have an old 401(k) from a previous employer, don’t forget to roll it over to your new employer’s plan or set up a separate investment account so you can keep track of your savings easily. Saving money for retirement is a great way to gain confidence in your financial plan and can help you reach short and long-term goals.
Paying off debt can bring feelings of achievement and happiness – which is why it’s a great idea to make paying off debt a priority for your overall well-being. We realize this can be one of the most difficult tasks when it comes to your finances, which is why we offer the Debt Free Life program to our clients. If you want to focus on getting rid of debt for good, the Debt Free Life program can help.
Symmetry Financial Group’s Debt Free Life program harnesses the power of the cash value of a life insurance policy to pay down your debts. This method allows you to be protected with life insurance coverage while chipping away at your debts one by one.
Your Symmetry Financial Group agent can provide a customized plan based on your budget to help you get on track to reaching your financial goals. Request more information on Debt Free Life today to see how the program can work for you.
This article is written for informational purposes only and should not be taken as financial advice. For a detailed consultation regarding Debt Free Life, please reach out to your Symmetry Financial Group insurance agent.