Debt worries have been linked to mental health problems in new research.
A survey linked to Mental Health Week found that 76% of people worry about their debts at least some of the time, but 15% worry about them all the time.
A third of those surveyed admitted financial stress was putting a strain on their mental health and more than half admitted they were so concerned they were failing to sleep at night.
Debt worries are also said to be causing stress in the family relationships of more than a third of the respondents.
But there’s no need to suffer in silence.
The StepChange debt charity has produced a series of tips designed to help you cope when you’re in debt:
Focus on the here and now
Getting out of debt can be a long term project which makes it important to concentrate on just one step at a time. Instead of worrying about what might happen in future, living in the moment will make you happier.
Getting out of debt often means doing without some of the things we love in our lives. But if you take stock of your situation you will realise there are some things more important than money and keeping a positive mental attitude will make your life easier. It can be hard, but it’s worth it in the long run.
Face your demons
When problems become too much it’s very tempting to bury your head in the sand and hope it will all go away. That’s not going to happen. Taking a positive step and seeking help can make a huge difference.
Make a budget
Controlling your spending is vital if you are serious about getting out of debt. Make a budget and stick to it. Sit back with a sheet of paper and make a list of your income and expenditure. If you’re spending more than is coming in you must take an honest look at what you are spending and decide what you can do without so the books balance.
This one may sound a little strange, but it’s all about cultivating a feeling of well-being. Physical exercise releases chemicals in your brain which make you feel better.
Falling into debt can become an isolating experience. We don’t feel comfortable talking about money troubles with friends and family, but if you can overcome the reluctance you will feel better. Confiding your troubles to a debt expert will make you feel even better still when you receive positive advice on reaching a solution to your debt problem.