Money is the root of all evil? Well, it’s certainly the root of a lot of stress. When you’re out of control of the money in your life you can feel stuck, miserable, and depressed.
Financial wellbeing isn’t about becoming a millionaire it’s about balance and living your best life.
Alongside the COVID-19 crisis, there’s been other big shake-ups over the last year, not least of all to our, financial and subsequently our mental wellbeing.
Many of us have faced new challenges, from redundancy to long-term furlough – and even if things are stable, the constant reminders of the worst recession in 300 years and the global mental health crisis can eat away at even the most positive mindset. According to research from the Workplace Wellbeing Alliance on behalf of IKEA, 66 per cent of those surveyed were worried about their finances, says Holistic Wellbeing Strategic Advisor, Nuzhad Chagan.
Managing your financial wellbeing isn’t all about crisis though. Many of us have been better-off over the last year, with less spending on commuting, coffees and after-work drinks, you may find you have more money and can use this unique time as an opportunity to rethink how you spend your money
Wherever you’re at, there will be a product, service, or consultant ready to help you get in control of your financial wellbeing. Money is no longer the big taboo and after the shared pandemic pain we’re much happier to be open about or finances, as well as our state of mind.
The annual Wellness report from the Global Wellness Summit is a great measure of what’s happening in the world of wellbeing. This year they predict financial wellbeing as a trend to watch.
“Financial therapists are tackling the intersection between money and mental health,” says the report. So what can a financial therapist do for you and when do you need to see one? Money coach and author Simonne Gnessen works with people on an emotional level. On her Linked-in profile she explains how she evolved from traditional financial advising. She wanted to do more than sell financial products and focus her energy on helping people to navigate the emotional relationship with money. Whether people are managing debt, living pay cheque to pay cheque or going through a big life change like divorce, she says she can help. Through coaching and life planning she aims to “help clients use their money effectively so that they can reach their highest aspirations in life.”
“Financial literacy courses, are also cited as a signature note to the trend, and are said to be helping by “simplifying complicated finance jargon”. UK based organisation the Money Charity point out that managing money is key life skill and they offer a range of courses for all ages and stages of life, and say they’ve reached 210,000 young people with their courses.
Of course, the trend has spurned a whole new breed of influencers. Go to Instagram and Tik Tok and you’ll find money mentors and money gurus/ influencers with advice to share and books and courses to tout. Sarah Ackwisombe, is an instagram influencer turned author who runs money manifesting courses on Facebook, and the No Bullshit Business School. Ackwisombe pitches what she teaches as female empowerment and targets millennial women, many of whom are working on start-ups or instagram-based businesses. As well as digging deep to understand what and where money blocks are by asking questions about childhood, parenting etc, her techniques on the money manifesting course include getting participants to list their “wants” and letting go of their attachment to money. They do this by leaving £20 notes on park benches or handing money to strangers.
The same trend is repeated at new social media venue, Clubhouse. Type in financial wellbeing and you’ll find financial wellbeing coaches, entrepreneurs and founders of platforms, as well as transformational coaches specialising in finance.
Banks putting wellbeing first
And it’s not just entrepreneurs, on Barclays Bank’s money mentor page, the messaging is friendly and wellbeing-focussed, ‘it’s about you’, and ‘it’s confidential.’ Monzo, Starling, Atom Bank and Revolut make money management more accessible and fun than a traditional bank by using your smart phone to track your spending, explains Simmone Gnessen, owner of financial coaching company Wise Monkey.
A financial awakening
Last word goes to the Global Wellness Summit: “In 2021 and beyond, we’ll begin to see the end of financial systems designed to profit from our failure and the start of financial wellness awakening. Money talks. It’s time we start using a language everyone can understand”