Two years into the pandemic, it may feel like you entered a time warp for some. And from shutdown-related expenses to changes to your employment situation or workload, it can be tougher than ever to try to navigate your financial life. How can you manage unexpected expenses during this time of uncertainty? What are some ways to deal with the financial stress you are experiencing? Here are four tips for managing financial stress through the pandemic.
Review Your Budget
It can be easy to stress over finances if you are not sure where your money is going or how much is coming in. By reviewing your bank and credit card statements and tracking your spending, you may better handle your budget. If you are spending more than you bring in, it may be time to look at what to cut. By saving money on certain expenses, you may be able to put these funds to use by directing them toward another budget category.
Another option is to increase your income, whether by asking your employer for a raise, seeking a new job, or taking on a side gig. Though more money is not necessarily the answer to all financial problems, it may provide some much-needed breathing room when dealing with financial stress or uncertainty.
Talk To Your Creditors
When facing significant debt or prioritizing which bills to pay on time, it can be tempting to avoid dealing with your creditors. While the idea of talking to your creditors about reducing or restructuring your debt may be intimidating, taking this step might help.
Your creditors may be willing to agree to a payment plan to help you avoid negative effects on your credit score or renegotiate your debt to reduce your interest rate or lower your monthly payments. But unless you communicate with your creditors, you may not know what options are possible.
Public and private resources may provide you with a broad range of assistance during troubling times. Though it can take some research to learn about these resources in your community, doing so might help. From rental assistance to unemployment benefits, job assistance or Small Business Administration loans, investigating the resources available to you may help you manage your pandemic-associated financial stress.
Know That You’re Not Alone
The pandemic has placed a tremendous strain on just about every demographic, including students, employees, managers, working parents, teachers, health care professionals and frontline workers. Though it can seem like you are navigating this pandemic stress alone, there might be the support that may help if you look for it. Seek out resources in your community and online to help manage your stress. You may want to focus on changing one small thing each day to work toward a larger goal.
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.
This article was prepared by WriterAccess.
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