One of the worst feelings in the world is not knowing whether you have enough money to pay your bills. It also can be difficult when you don’t know from where your next paycheck will be coming. Financial insecurity can cause stress and anxiety in your life, and it can contribute to strain in your relationships.
In order to improve your relationship with money as well as your relationships with others, take stock of your financial stability and security so that you can identify what you can do to make your situation better. Improving your money management skills and budget can go a long way toward achieving financial security.
Your income level contributes a great deal to your financial security. Do you make enough money to cover the necessities of life? Is there enough coming in each month for you to meet your obligations?
If you know that you will be able to buy groceries and pay the mortgage, you are likely to feel secure in your situation. If you are concerned about your income level, look for ways to cut back your expenses or—better yet—find ways to increase your monthly income.
Financial security isn’t just about your income level—it also includes your income sources. Do you rely mostly on a day job for your income? Do you worry that you will be laid off or that your hours will be cut?
When most of your money comes from one place, your feelings of security depend entirely on someone else. You can change this by cultivating diverse sources of income instead.
When you’re drowning in debt, it’s hard to feel financially secure. This is because your money is not your own. It’s owed to someone else, and you are on the hook for repaying what you have borrowed—with interest.
Paying off debt can go a long way toward helping you feel more financially secure. Once you have paid off your debt, you won’t have to stress about someone else claiming your income.
Savings and emergency funds
Even if you live within your income level, you might be painfully aware that you are one financial setback away from disaster. This state of being is not one that allows you to feel financially secure. Instead, it can make you feel as though any problem could become a full-blown financial crisis.
Set aside money each month to build up your emergency fund, which can provide you with peace of mind. An emergency fund can give you the means to pay for financial setbacks, whether your car has broken down or your hours are cut at work. Build up your savings and you’ll feel more financially secure.
Your level of contentment also has something to do with whether or not you feel financially secure. If you can be content with what you have, rather than thinking that you need more stuff, it can do wonders for your financial security. When you decide that you have enough, there is no striving for more and no inflating your lifestyle to the point that it becomes unwieldy.
It’s easy for money to take charge of your life if you aren’t careful. Soon, you may no longer feel in control of your finances. Consider the reasons that you want more money and really evaluate your motivations when making purchases. If your quality of life isn’t improved by your purchases, perhaps it’s time to think about contentment—and priorities. You’ll feel more financially secure when you aren’t always trying to keep up with a false ideal.
What do you think? What makes you feel more financially secure?
Miranda Marquit is a freelance journalist specializing in financial topics. Read more of her writing on Huffington Post, Wise Bread, AllBusiness, and at her website, Planting Money Seeds. Follow her on Twitter: @MMarquit