Managing money can be a difficult task. For those who are living with mental health concerns, this task can be a lot more difficult. Medical expenses along with fluctuations in job stability often pose significant challenges. Although this can be stressful, with some discipline you can get your finances under control and begin to live more worry free!
Step 1: Assess The Situation
When you are having financial difficulties, it is easy to ignore the bank account and turn a blind eye. This can make things worse. Understand that your household is running on a 'cash in and cash out' basis. Knowing exactly how much money is coming in and out each month will allow you to assess how bad the situation is, see where you are falling short and make adjustments to your expenses or work hours each week to bridge the gap.
Step 2: Cut Expenses
Here are a few quick things you can do to lower your monthly expenses. Doing just one or two of these things can potentially save you hundreds, maybe even thousands each month.
1. Cut cable
2. Switch car insurance providers
3. Drive less
4. Switch cell phone providers
5. Drink less coffee
6. Meal prep & bring lunch to work
7. Shop at wholesale stores & buy items in bulk.
8. Change your medical providers. At Modern Therapy, an entire month of talk therapy can be cheaper than one out of pocket session. Click here to learn more.
9. Ask yourself: “Do I need to buy this?”
Step 3: Increase Your Income
Once you have your expenses as low as you can get them, focus on finding ways to increase your income. Here are a few tips:
1. Pickup extra hours where you currently work
2. Looking for a second part-time job or a job that pays more
3. Sell some items you don’t use anymore
Step 4: Pay Off Debt
Once your income is more than your monthly expenses, take anything that is left over at the end of the month and begin to payoff any debt you may have. Try starting with the loans that are the highest interest rates first.
Step 5: Start Saving
Once your debt is paid off, it is time to start saving money. If you don’t already have one, open up a separate savings account at your bank and set up a weekly transfer. Just $25 per week adds up to over $1300 after 1 year.
By following this process you can begin to make the shift that is needed to turn your financial situation around!