What to do if you’re worried about money 

Get a sinking feeling when you look at your bank balance? Money worries can feel overwhelmingly stressful, but there are ways to get your money worries under control. 

Worrying about money is totally normal, especially in today’s world of rising costs and financial uncertainty. But if money worries start to keep you up at night, or they start feeling impossible to overcome, here are some steps you can take to regain control. 

Face the facts 

The worst thing you can do when it comes to money is ignore it. As scary as it feels, you’ll be in a much better position to start getting your money under control if you know exactly what you’re dealing with.  

So gather up your bank statements and write down all of your outgoings, debts and savings (if you’ve got any). Make a simple budget and look at where you’re spending the most. This will give you a clear picture of where your money is going, and you’ll be able to see in black and white where you can make some cutbacks. 

Talk to companies 

If you know you’re not able to make payments, get in touch with companies (the council for council tax, energy providers, broadband companies, insurance providers, etc.) as soon as possible. Explain your situation and ask if there’s any help available: payment plans can be helpful. You might think they won’t care, but you’d be surprised at their willingness to work with you.  

Seek advice 

If you’re struggling with debt, consider getting support. Free and confidential debt advice is available from organisations like Citizens Advice, StepChange and National Debtline. These organisations deal with debt on a daily basis and will know how best to help you, plus they can advise you of your rights, help you set up a manageable repayment plan and negotiate with creditors. 

Claim what you’re entitled to 

If you don’t claim benefits, make sure you look to see if you’re entitled to any. They’re not only for people who are out of work, benefits like Universal Credit are often paid to those who are employed. The website EntitledTo [link: https://entitledto.co.uk/] can help you calculate what you may be able to claim using a simple calculator. 

Talk about your worries 

Financial worries can take a toll on your mental wellbeing, especially if you’re bottling it all up. If you feel comfortable, try opening up to friends and family – chances are they can empathise with your concerns. If you don’t feel comfortable talking to people you know, find a therapist or join a forum to talk to other people in the same boat, like MoneySavingExpert forum [https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/

Anxiety over money can be isolating, and it’s not long before it snowballs into something that can really affect your mental health. Go easy on yourself and remember you’re not alone.