Quick Wins to Reduce Financial Stress

Quick Wins to Reduce Financial Stress

The cost of living is continuing to climb.  Whether it is food, electricity, petrol, or rising mortgage payments, these increases are stretching the family budget to the limit.

Fortunately, you can move from anxiety and stress to financial confidence.

When you know more, you can do more.  Here are some Quick Wins to reduce your financial stress levels.

1. Face up to your Debt

A Debt is ANY money, you owe to ANYbody, for ANY reason. Make of list on paper, and then line them up from smallest to largest.  Now you’re ready to attack them and get them out of your life. 

Pay minimums on all loans, and then throw everything at the smallest first.  You’ll soon get the first one paid off and develop the momentum and enthusiasm to take on the rest.

Facts are your friends. When you can see your position, it’s often less frightening than you imagined. 

2. Set up a Budget

A Budget is a game plan for your income.  It’s about providing clear instructions to your money and giving yourself permission to spend on the things that really matter.

Money is very good at following orders, but you have to be the one who gives the instructions.  Start by looking at the transactions from your bank account and credit card over the last few months.  This will show you how you spend.  Look for opportunities to shrink the expenses down where possible.

3. $100 Savings Sprint

Open a separate savings account if you don’t already have one. Then transfer in $100 today.
Congratulations! You’ve made a start with saving and you’re on your way.  If that’s too much, try $50 or $20.  The amount is less important than getting started.

4. Subscriptions

Cancel one subscription TODAY.  And if you really want to go to town on this one, then take a hard look at all of your subscriptions.

Try having one streaming service at a time. Use it up completely, then cancel it and switch to another one every 3 months.

Also, remember to enjoy the free stuff (ABC iView, SBS On Demand and all the major networks have free apps.  There is so much free content you can access.

5. De-Clutter

Take a leaf out of the Minimalist playbook and de-clutter your home.  Use the 1-2-3 approach. Throw away 1 thing. Sell 2 things. Donate 3 things.

Once you get started you’ll want to do even more.  You’ll get some cash back and give to the community.  Plus moving unwanted items out of your house feels amazing.

6. Learn more

Finances are easier than we think, so it pays to keep on learning. Find an article, podcast, or blog, and keep putting new information into your brain.

Remember doing well with money is 20% Knowledge and 80% Behaviour, so you have to fuel both sides of the equation.

7. No-Cost or Low-Cost Catch Ups

When money is tight don’t fall into the trap of going out for dinner and drinks just because you’re invited.  It’s too easy to blow $100-$200 or even more.  Instead flip the script and offer to have people over to your place.

You can organise a Game Night, or a Movie Night.  Ask everyone to bring a meal, or get pizza bases and everyone brings their favourite toppings.

Or head to the local park with a footy / cricket gear / good book, a picnic blanket, and snacks from home.  When you’re practicing new money habits, look for fun, different and free activities.

8. Unsubscribe

Unsubscribe from at LEAST 5 marketing emails.  You know the ones – 40% Off! Great Deal! etc.  They’re designed to tempt you and shift money from your pocket, into theirs.  So be strong and get them out of your life.

Deleting the email is good.  But hitting Unsubscribe is best.

9. Supermarket Savings

Challenge yourself to spend $50 less at the supermarket on your next shop.  I know everything is going up but being intentional with your choices works.

Try Meal Planning as a way of reducing the randomness and waste from your shopping trip.  And watch out for stress release purchases like that $13 tub of Ben & Jerrys ice cream.
Do you Deserve it? Maybe.
Do you Need it? No.
Does it help your goals? Heck no!

If you reckon $50 is too much, go for a $20 or $30 saving to start. Then challenge yourself to go further next time.

10. Work on it together

Money stress and money fights can have a big impact on relationships.  Coming up with a plan, and working on it as a couple, without BLAME or SHAME, will bring you closer together over time.

It’s ok if one of you takes the lead with money stuff. However you both need to come to the table each week or fortnight to check-in on the progress you’re making.  It will soon become the opportunity to celebrate.

If you’re single, or not sharing finances with your partner yet, then join up with a motivated friend and act as an accountability partner for each other.

Don’t try to do all 10 items on the list in one go.  Instead, pick a couple and commit to them as your priorities for the next 2 weeks.  Then circle back to pick some more and repeat.

Financial stress is real. But it doesn’t have to stay that way forever.  By looking forward, and working a plan to control your variables, you can Win with Money. Now is the time to turn your hard work into personal and financial progress.
To get ahead in 2023, book a consultation. No Cost | No Obligation | No Judgement

“Money is a terrible master but an excellent servant.”
P.T. Barnum
American author