We are all happy to put 2020 behind us! As we head into a new year some things can follow us, financial stress being one of them. Many have had their incomes take a hit or have suffered a job loss. It is common for money and finances to be a top stressor, but a pandemic can add to it.

One big thing stress can impact is your health. Learning to cope and manage your stress is important. No matter your situation, there are ways you can try to ease this burden, here are some tips:

Track Your Spending
When money is tight it’s important to track every penny. Once you start tracking your financial habits it’s easier to see where you may be able to make adjustments.

What are your essential bills? Your mortgage, auto loan and utilities are always big ones to pay first. Once your big, non-negotiables are paid then pay the rest. This may help you to not overspend before your bills are paid.

Make Cuts
Tracking your spending will help you figure out where to make cuts. This can be a tough one. Try making a list and put your expense in two categories – wants and needs. What do you actually need? Examples of this are housing, food, etc. What do you want? Your cable, subscription services, etc. fit into this category. Take your want list and see where you can cut back. Shop around your cable, cancel unwanted subscriptions and make other cuts where possible. As tough as it is, just remember it’s temporary until you can get back on your feet.

Create an Extra Source of Income
When money is tight, starting a gig on the side can be helpful. There are so many remote opportunities available now, try looking for something you are able to do in your free time. Are you creative? Try selling on Etsy. Need to clean out the attic? See what you can sell on eBay. If you have time and talents it’s a great way to supplement your income.

Destress for Free
Take care of yourself during this time too. Take the stress off for free by looking into free online exercise classes, learning a new skill (free classes online) or reading a book.