Are finances on your self-care checklist? We often forget to take care of ourselves, especially when it comes to our money and financial health. It is important to prioritise mental health and the relationship between your mental health and money is strong.
Why does financial self-care matter?
Neglecting your finances has the same effect as turning away from your physical, emotional, and mental health. Avoiding your money problems and overspending your way into debt can only heighten your stress. So take time to redefine what self-care means for you.
While that spa day is a great way to unwind, a financial self-care means something more. Here are a few ways to include financial self-care into your self-care routine.
Take the first step by facing your finances. Understand where you stand and what you lack. It’s a great way to ease the fear and anxiety.
Create a budget
You need one! It’s an effective way to take control of where your money is going. Nail down the budget that matches your cash flows and start Start tracking your spending over a few months. This will help you to adjust your spending habits.
Understand your current spending habits
Pull up account statements and compare the past few months of purchases. Categorize them into three buckets: needs (groceries, rent, etc), wants (eating out, treating yourself, etc), and “Future You” (saving, investing, etc).Add them up to see how much you spend on each bucket per month.
Set goals for future spending habits
Try out the 50/20/30 budgeting rule. It’s a great way to map out your expenses and track your finances. According to the rule, 50% of your take-home pay will go to needs, 30% will go to wants, and 20% toward Future You.
However, if you’re just starting out on budgeting, these percentages might not be realistic, which is why it needs to be a part of your self-care checklist.
Pay down debt
Debt can be a roadblock on the way to financial wellness. The quickest way to pay off your debt is to regularly pay the minimum required payments. Debt is the silent killer, the longer you take to pay off debt, the more interest you’ll owe.
Start an emergency fund
An emergency fund can help bail you out financially when you run into expensive financial situations. It can cover you until things get back to normal. Financial experts recommend saving between three and six months’ worth of your take-home pay.
Start investing toward your goals
Now that you’ve finished the above steps in your self-care checklist, it’s time to step up your game and invest toward your long-term goals, such as retirement contributions, or buying a home.
Making regular money check-ins a part of your self-care routine is the key to achieving the financial wellness you’ve been striving for.
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