Money anxiety disorder is a condition which describes those who constantly worry about money. As a form of anxiety, it can have not just a mental but also a physical effect on your everyday life.
Money anxiety disorder is a clinical condition where mental and physical health is affected due to worries about money. GPs can support with physical and mental conditions, and StepChange debt charity can help resolve your financial issues.
While many people suffer from money anxiety disorder, there are ways to control and mitigate the impact on your life.
As the cost of living continues to rise and wages are often under pressure, this can lead to extreme cases of money anxiety disorder. Sometimes described as a feeling of loss of control it can create huge mental pressure on individuals which can subsequently impact other areas of their life.
Read on for all the details.
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You only need to ask somebody who suffers from money anxiety disorder to realise how this can impact your life. It can prompt extreme behaviour from an individual which goes above and beyond just being concerned about money – it becomes a kind of obsession.
As this is a recognised disorder, there are various types of treatment available, ranging from cognitive behavioural therapy to basic financial management. In many ways, the key to treating and controlling money anxiety disorder is to “take back control” of the situation which often feels out of control.
There are many different signs indicating that somebody may be suffering from a finance-related disorder such as money anxiety. These include:-
Many people suffering from such conditions appear to be in constant denial and unable to even discuss the subject of finances and money.
The spending habits of somebody suffering from money anxiety disorder can change dramatically with minimal spending on everyday goods, socialising and in some cases their appearance.
Another indicator of someone suffering from money anxiety disorder can be the regular use of credit cards. As they are not physically spending that money at the time, although they will pay it back later on, this can sometimes reduce the pressure and the feelings surrounding this disorder. However, this is only a short term fix!
Financial pressures of any kind can have a huge impact on your mental health with depression often a sign of problems. This is certainly the case with money anxiety disorder where prolonged high levels of anxiety can bring about life-changing conditions such as depression.
As well as mental challenges with money anxiety disorder, you may also experience physical challenges. Depression can lead to significant weight loss or weight gain and trouble sleeping at night time is a tell-tale sign.
Fatigue and general disinterest in everyday life can sometimes be mistaken for “laziness” when, in reality, the person may be suffering from a mental illness.
Research shows that many people suffering from anxiety and phobias will do so in secret, even trying to hide the condition from their closest friends and family. Therefore, as and when you feel comfortable confiding in your partner, you may find it very therapeutic and extremely helpful. They say a trouble shared is a troubled halved.
Once you open up to like-minded people or friends and family, you will very quickly notice that money anxiety disorder is not uncommon. We live in an era where economies have been hitting highs and lows with unemployment following a similar pattern.
Yet month by month, the cost of living continues to increase placing pressure on family finances. You may be able to find a support group in your area where you can sit down, discuss your concerns and find out that you are not on your own.
When looking to take control of your finances, it is very important to take a step back, look at things from a distance and begin putting a plan into place. Writing down all of your outstanding debts, income and expenditure may be challenging for somebody with money anxiety disorder, but it is the first step on the road to recovery.
Akin to visiting the dentist, you will find that many of the financial worries in your mind are nowhere near as bad in real life.
However, for your physical and mental well-being, you need to find a balance between spending and living life. We are not necessarily talking about expensive weekends away, but some of the simple things in life, such as visiting the local park or a meal with your partner could help you put things in perspective.
On the flip side of the coin, if you overindulge in credit card spending which you can’t afford to repay in the short term, then this will create pressure that you simply don’t need. As they say, everything in moderation.
If you are genuinely worried about your finances to the extent that your physical and mental well-being is being impacted, then you may benefit from saving for emergencies. You never know what unexpected expenses made be just around the corner and therefore having some savings for a rainy day can be very useful. It can also help to reduce pressure on those who sometimes struggle to make ends meet.
As an absolute minimum, you should review your finances at the end of each year to see where you stand, your income, expenditure and any surplus capital going forward. It may also be sensible to review your monthly expenditure in more detail and try to identify areas where you can save money.
In reality, by simply looking at your monthly bank statements, you should be able to get an idea of how your finances stand. If you need to make changes, make them as soon as possible.
Money anxiety disorder is a recognised condition with which more and more people will be flirting on a regular basis. The mental and physical stress created by constant money worries can have a long-term impact on your life. However, there are support groups, ways to take back control as well as medical and psychological solutions. You are not on your own!
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