Credit Crunch Stress

November 12, 2012

Credit Crunch Stress

Many things can make you feel anxious and cause emotional stress. Everyone is aware that if you lose your job or have financial problems then it will have a negative effect on your wellbeing. The thought of losing your home or running up debts which you will be unable to pay off will lead to worry and anxiety.

However, no matter how bad things appear to be, there are some things that you can do to help yourself at these trying times. Professor David Richards, from Mental Health Services Research at the University of Exeter, confirms that financial problems can affect your mental balance.

Financial problems have a negative effect on mental wellbeing but that is only a part of the problem. There is normally a reason why the financial problems started, perhaps redundancy. This not only leads to anxiety about debts and finance, it is also the time when self-esteem issues will surface. All of this adds to the emotional distress being suffered. It has to be remembered though, that all of these feelings are normal, they are very common emotions and part of the human psyche.

Am I emotionally distressed?

First of all we have to identify the symptoms of being emotionally distressed. The following symptoms will commonly be seen or felt if the person is emotionally distressed. There will be changes in routine and feelings. Perhaps you will have difficulty sleeping, lose your appetite, not be able to concentrate or just feel weepy all the time. Perhaps you will stay in bed a lot longer and meeting friends will become much less frequent. You may also doubt your own self worth. Thoughts like “I’m not worth anything” or “I’m just not good enough (for anything)” will be recurrent.

How can I help myself?

Tips to deal with the anxiety and mental issues arising from it are varied, and they are well worth a try. Even though you may feel that the world is against you and life is difficult you must remain active without drinking too much alcohol and you must identify and face your fears.

Methods for doing this can be difficult, but well worth the effort. Do not withdraw from the world, get out just the same as you did before. Keep seeing your friends, if you have more time on your hands then do a bit more exercise. Exercise can help your mood if you have been feeling down. Check out the local area for free exercise ideas. The bills will keep coming in, keep trying to pay them and keep your CV updated for that job that may come at anytime.

You have to keep working at things that you find difficult. If you identify that your confidence is waning then do something to prove to yourself that you can deal with the issue. If bills keep arriving and you know that paying them is not possible then face up to it. Contact the lenders, get advice on how to prioritise your debts, keep in contact. It’s easy to stop talking at times like these but keep the dialogue going. That’s your method of facing your fears and can stop other problems getting bigger over time.

Get into a good routine, do not stay in bed all day and avoid alcohol. Alcohol cannot help you with your problems and it can add to stress levels. Because you have more time on your hands makes it easier to have time for a drink. You must avoid this pitfall. Many government agencies can give advice on how to cut down on your drinking. If you think that the problem is major them perhaps a visit to your GP is in order.

Ensure that your eating habits remain healthy. If you’re feeling low you may feel that cooking a proper meal is too much work then you will end up eating snacks which may have less nourishment and more sugar. You can stay healthy on a budget, and the government and their agencies’ websites have lots of ideas for exercising and healthy eating.

Many charities can help with the financial issues and others can help with the anxiety related or mental health problems. If you need to find out about benefits, how to cope with debt, find out what you’re entitled to if you’re made redundant and who to contact if you lose your home then The Citizens Advice Bureau website is a great starting choice. The charity Mind also has lots of useful information on its website. Its section called Money and Mental Health includes advice on how to manage debt.

If your problems are more personal and anxiety based and maybe you start feeling like coping is too much for you, life is just too hard or your life isn’t worth living, then get help straight away. These danger signals are indications that mean you need to talk to someone. Your GP or contact helplines such as Samaritans (08457 90 90 90) are the places to go for confidential, non-judgemental emotional support.

When should I see the doctor?

Most people having the normal feelings of being worried, anxious or down for a few days or weeks then pick themselves up and start to feel ready for life’s new challenges. However there is a small percentage of people who are unable to do that. For these people the anxiety does not go away, and if untreated can hinder their journey through life.

If the feelings of worry and anxiety haven’t gone away after a few weeks then go and see your GP. Sometimes talking to a therapist helps.

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