S is for Stress

Debt Stress is a barrier to success.  Anxiety over accruing interest, phone calls from creditors, and tough financial decisions can pile up.  Some people can handle this stress well and be motivated by it, but others turn to avoidance, guilt, or panic.

If your debt stress is causing you to avoid dealing with your debt, this is your reminder to take action.  Stop reading, call your creditor, check your balance, make or set up a future payment, or check out our financial calculators.  There are a lot of ways to deal with avoidance, but here are a few favorites:

  1. Set up a weekly or monthly appointment with yourself to check in with your creditors and bank. You’re more likely to follow through if you set time aside in advance, and you’re better equipped to deal with the stress if you have time to prepare.
  2. Download a mobile app that can show your account balances, and get in the habit of checking it when you check Facebook or email.
  3. Talk to someone you love and trust, ask them to sit with you while you make calls, or help you go over statements and plan payments. Remember that a burden shared is a burden halved.

Your debt stress might show up as guilt or panic.  It’s easy to feel guilty about spending money, especially when you’re living paycheck to paycheck or facing a large balance.  We recommend forgiving yourself: don’t forget your missteps, but be kind about mistakes.  You’re only human.  If you don’t forgive yourself you’re likely to associate handling debt with negative feelings, leading you down the avoidance road.  It’s important to remember that you deserve healthy food, a safe place to live, easy access to healthcare, and quality time with loved ones, even if they aren’t available to you because of your debt.

Our last piece of advice to help with Debt Stress is “Don’t panic!”.  Easier said than done, we know.  Take time for yourself to exercise, meditate, pray, or talk honestly with a loved one – you need to be well rested and confident to get financially fit.  We know you can do it, and we’re providing CapitalYOU as a resource to help you get there.