If you’re struggling with your mental health, it can make earning and managing your money harder. And, worrying about your finances can make your mental health worse. The two things can feed each other and become a vicious cycle.
2020 has been particularly tough, both on finances and mental health. Lockdowns have left many people worried and isolated, while millions of people have faced job insecurity, furlough, and unemployment because of the economic impact of Covid-19.
A new report from insurer Royal London has found that getting your finances in order, and getting help from a financial professional, can have a positive impact on your mental wellbeing. Read on to find out more.
2020 has been tough for our mental health
Lockdown and furlough have been tough on our mental health. In addition, more than a million people in the UK have been diagnosed with coronavirus, so you may have also had to deal with your own ill heath, or that of someone close to you.
In England, the Centre for Mental Health has predicted that up to ten million people will need mental health support as a direct consequence of Covid-19. More than eight million of these are adults.
The effect on individuals with pre-existing mental health problems and on those from underprivileged backgrounds is even greater – and this could be exacerbated in the winter as the UK drifts in and out of further lockdowns and restrictions.
The World Health Organisation has also warned that depression and anxiety could increase susceptibility to infection and transmission of the virus. There is also evidence to suggest that poor mental health affects individual adherence to social distancing measures and mask-wearing and could affect uptake of a vaccine.
Geoff Hayes, the head of health policy and influencing at the mental health charity Mind, says: “It is the people who are already discriminated against or already vulnerable who will find it hardest to cope now and in the winter.
“There is a huge concern that, as hospital wards begin to fill again and Covid takes priority, patients with severe mental health will suffer.”
How does money affect your mental health?
For many people, money worries form a big part of why they struggle with their mental health. There are lots of ways that your finances and your mental health can affect each other:
- You may panic or feel anxious dealing with certain financial matters. Opening a bank statement or talking to a lender can be stressful
- You may feel anxious about a decision to spend some money, even if you can afford it
- Spending can give you a brief high, so you might spend more than you have in order to try and feel better
- If your mood is low, you might not even try and organise your finances, which could make your situation worse
- Your mental health might impact on your ability to work or study, which could affect your income
- Debts are a common source of stress, especially if you feel they are out of control
- Worrying about your household finances can lead to problems with your sleep
- You might not be able to afford some of the essential items you need to feel well. This might be food, water, heating, or treatments like medication and therapy.
How getting financially organised can help
A new study by leading insurer Royal London has looked at the positive impact that getting financially organised can have on your mental wellbeing.
The study found significant emotional wellbeing benefits in people who sought expert help when it came to their finances. The research revealed:
- 68% of people who had taken advice from a financial expert felt more in control of their finances
- 63% of people who had taken advice felt financially secure and stable
- 44% of people who had taken advice said they were prepared to cope with life’s shocks
Source: Royal London
You can see from the figures above that those people who had sought financial help were more in control, more confident, and more prepared to cope with a financial shock than those people who had never taken advice.
People who had financial help were less worried about their household finances and were less concerned about their ability to cope financially when they retire.
Overall, the top three emotional benefits of financial advice are:
- Having access to financial expertise makes you more confident in your financial plans
- Receiving professional financial advice helps you feel in control of your finances
- Having contact with a financial expert gives you peace of mind.
What this study proves is that people who get on top of their finances, often with the help of an expert, worry less about their money.
The peace of mind benefits of life insurance and Critical Illness cover
We’ve seen that getting your finances in order can provide benefits for your emotional wellbeing. One of the key ways that you can sleep more easily at night is to ensure that you and your family have the right protection in place should the worst happen.
Ask yourself this simple question: “If I were to die, or have to take an extended period off work due to a serious illness, would my family struggle financially?”
If the answer is ‘yes’, then it’s time to think about putting some protection in place. A study in the US in 2019 found that more than two in three people (69%) with life insurance say they are less stressed knowing their family is financially protected.
When you put life insurance in place you are buying:
- The peace of mind of knowing your family will not be forced to move home if you die
- The cost of additional childcare if your spouse or partner suddenly becomes a single parent
- Financial support for months and years at a stressful time
- The funding that will enable the dreams and aspirations you have for your children to be fulfilled.
And you might be surprised at the amount that life insurance costs. For many people, for less than the price of a takeaway you can make sure that you have the right cover in place, meaning you have one less thing to worry about.
How we can help you improve your emotional wellbeing
As we have seen, speaking to an expert can help you to feel more confident and more in control of your finances.
I’m Insured is an independent insurance broker with vast experience of helping people to get the right cover at the right price. We’re here to find you the best quotes online and to reduce the cost of your monthly insurance premiums.
- Compare life insurance from many of the UK's most reputable providers
- Our service is fast, free, and secure
- Compare cheap life insurance quotes – we even take less than the standard level of commission so you can save money on the cost of cover.
We also have specialist knowledge and experience in life insurance for people who suffer with depression and other mental health conditions. This means that we can provide specialist support with your anxiety life insurance application and can help you find the right mental health life insurance.
Get a life insurance quote online today or call us on 0800 334 5980.
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