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What is Financial Stress and How to Cope with it?

Financial stress

Financial stress in men and ways to cope with it

With the traditional masculine standards, prevailing in our society, men often shoulder the burden of being the sole providers of their families. There is a great deal of emotional tension and anxiety that comes with having to adhere to this concept. But this isn’t always the case, as financial stress stems from various other factors like low income, debt, existing or upcoming expenses etc. Money is, therefore, one of the most common causes of anxiety.

Signs of Financial Stress

  • Symptoms of anxiety-like shortness of breath or uneasiness while thinking of money
  • Cancelling social plans and avoiding meeting people
  • The feeling of shame or embarrassment
  • Anger or irritability with those who have access to your income, such as a family member or a boss who decides on your increase at work 
  • Delaying much-needed healthcare
  • Having trouble sleeping
  • Having late or undue bills
  • Worry or hopelessness about the future
  • Relying on unhealthy coping mechanisms like drug or alcohol abuse

Mental and Physical Side Effects of Financial Stress

High levels of financial stress can cause symptoms like anxiety, headaches/migraines, weakened immune systems, digestive problems, high blood pressure, muscle tension, heart arrhythmia, depression, and a sense of being overburdened, just like other stresses.

According to Forbes, those who are under financial stress are twice as likely to report having bad overall health and are four times more likely to complain of diseases.

Mental Health

When the symptoms are severe enough, they can be mistaken for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Financial stress destroys your self-esteem and self-efficacy when you can’t seem to catch up on the expenses. It makes you antisocial, preventing you from attending gatherings and events. It is also possible that all of your time and emotional energy is spent thinking about money-related issues.

Depression in men usually remains unnoticed or undiagnosed. This is due to the fact that most of them disregard their serious symptoms and think they are probably just feeling low when in reality depression goes beyond feeling down. Finding it hard to get out of bed, having difficulty in sleeping and neglecting your hygiene, diet and exercise are all possible signs of depression.

Physical Health

Since financial stress is a form of chronic stress, the impact on your health and well-being can be severe. There are a range of physical symptoms that might occur, as with any stress-related disease. Among these signs are:

  • Intake of drugs
  • Cardiovascular disease/attack
  • Weight gain/loss
  • Diabetes
  • Muscle tenseness
  • Insomnia
  • High Blood pressure 
  • Gastrointestinal problems

Ways to Cope with Financial Stress

  1. Strategise your debt reduction

Debt from credit cards is a common source of financial stress. If you have balances on many credit cards, try adopting the snowball technique (paying off your bills one at a time, starting with the smallest) or the high-interest strategy (concentrating on the cards with the highest interest rates first).

  1. Consider seeking help

If the previous technique didn’t work for you then you might want to seek help from a trusted source. Depending on where you live, there are a number of organizations that offer free counselling on dealing with financial problems. Finally, talk to a trusted friend or family member who might be able to offer support.

  1. Create a budget:

A budget is an effective tool for understanding and controlling your spending. It might assist you to save money and prevent overspending on current expenses. When you have a complete view of where your money is spent each month, you may look for ways to reroute some of it toward the things that are straining your finances.

  1. Prioritise what’s important:

When money is tight, making the most of your existing income is crucial. Recognise the little things that build up. For instance, although you might not be able to reduce any one expense by Rs. 5000 a month, you could be able to find five that can each be reduced by Rs. 500.

  1. Create an Emergency Fund:

Financial concerns can be significantly reduced by having money set aside for emergencies like illnesses, job loss or events. Building an emergency fund might, however, seem intimidating but you don’t have to be concerned about the exact amount; what matters is that you continuously save money.


Till today most men in our society are expected to be the breadwinners of the family. Although times have changed, this still seems to be the case. According to recent research, roughly 7 in 10 adults said that it’s important for a man to provide for his family financially in order to be viewed as a good spouse. In multiple ways, society convinces males that they are unimportant if they cannot provide or accomplish success. This stereotype creates expectations and burdens for males, as well as their sense of self and values. Financial stress may be overwhelming on numerous levels but in no way should it decide any person’s worth because at last people aren’t their bank accounts.


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