Coping with money worries and job uncertainty
Worrying about money or work can have a big impact on your mental health and wellbeing.
Poor mental health can make managing your finances harder, and feeling stressed about money can make your mental health worse, so it's important to take action.
Here are some things you can do to feel more in control, as well as lots of free support if you need it.
1. Create a budget
Setting a budget on what you can afford to spend each week or month may help you feel more in control of managing your money.
A budget can also be a good way to manage debt or stop you from going into debt.
Setting a weekly time to look at bills and other costs and working out what you can spend or save may also be helpful.
MoneyHelper’s budget planner is a free online tool to help you get started planning your budget.
2. Get free debt and finance advice
If you are struggling with money or debt, it can feel like there is no way out, but there are organisations that offer advice, and some can help you come up with a plan to feel more in control.
It can be tempting to avoid tackling debt head on – but the sooner you face your fears and get help, the sooner you can start getting back on top of things
Mental Health and Money Advice has advice and support for people experiencing issues with mental health and money.
3. Know your employment rights and get support
If you’re worried about work, redundancy, losing your job or you’ve lost your job, knowing what options you have can help.
MoneyHelper’s advice on losing your job covers redundancy and how to manage money after job loss. There’s also advice for the self-employed.
Citizens Advice has lots of information about benefits and support for wider issues you might be facing.
Redundancy can also be a big worry, so knowing your redundancy rights may help you feel less stressed.
4. Talk about how you are feeling
It's good to talk to someone you trust about your situation, whether that's a family member, friend or someone at work. They can support you, or help come up with a plan for what to do.
If you are struggling with how you are feeling, there are lots of mental health charities who can help – no matter how big or how small the problem feels.
The NHS has a list of mental health services or see our urgent support page if you need to speak to someone right now. Relate has advice and offers help from trained counsellors if money is causing problems in your relationships.
5. Be kind to yourself
It's good to be kind to yourself, especially during hard times – and remember that things will change.
If you're struggling to cope with financial uncertainty or job worries, try to accept that you cannot control everything. Try to focus your time and energy on what you can control.
Our video gives some techniques to help you manage how you are feeling.
Video: Managing unhelpful thoughts
Check out our short video to get some practical tips on how you can challenge your thoughts and start to break unhelpful cycles.
6. Create and stick to a routine
Having a routine can help to give you a sense of purpose and boost your mood.
If things are tough for you right now and you’re feeling low, it can be hard to stick to a routine – start with simple or easy things and, as you progress, your mood should improve.
Try to get up and go to bed at the same time each day, whether you’re working or not. Plan your week to include things you like or that are meaningful to you. Aim to include some social and fun stuff, plus some exercise, which can help to keep you more positive.
If you need to spend some of your working hours looking for a new job, try to make sure you still switch off at the end of the day and relax.
7. Clear your mind
Relaxation techniques and meditation can help to deal with feelings of anxiety about money and work – try listening to our relaxation audio.
Taking a moment to pause and focus on your breathing can really help you feel more calm and present. Even taking a few deep breaths in and out can help, or try our mindful breathing exercise video to guide you.
Video: Mindful breathing
Mindfulness and meditation help you to be in the present. Try our mindful breathing video. It can help you feel more calm.
8. Look after your physical health
Our physical health has a big impact on how we feel emotionally and mentally.
During uncertain times, like when dealing with job issues or money worries, it can also be easy to develop unhealthy habits, which can make you feel worse.
- keep active – check out Better Health: Get active for ideas, like Couch to 5k and Active 10
- aim for healthy, well-balanced meals and drink enough water – see NHS: Eat Well
- avoid drinking too much alcohol – get support on Better Health: Ways to drink less
- quit smoking, because it's never too late – get support on Better Health: Quit smoking
If you are concerned about drug use, FRANK offers information and advice, including where to get help, and has a free advice line – 0300 123 6600.
Further support on money and mental health
Advice and support on issues with money and mental health is offered by:
- Mental Health and Money Advice
- Mind's Mental Health At Work
- Stop Loan Sharks (offers practical and emotional confidential support by phone)
Further financial support and advice
Further financial advice can be found on the following websites:
- Help for Households
- StepChange Debt Charity
- Money Trust's Business Debtline
- Citizens Advice: debt and money
- MoneyHelper: interest rates explained
- GOV.UK: Options for paying off your debts