Money talk is not necessarily an easy conversation to have. For many people, finances can cause crippling anxiety. But there are certainly ways to curb such stress. It’s important to take control over your money—so your money, or lack thereof, doesn’t take control over you.
With that said, here are five ways to become far less freaked out about your finances.
1. Understand that you’re not alone.
If your finances freak you out, first find solace in knowing that you’re not alone. The reality is that most folks feel stress about their financial situations, financial futures or both.
In fact, according to a recent “Thriving Wallet” study by Thrive Global and Discover, 90 percent of Americans admit that money induces stress. Another CreditWise survey by Capital One, finds that, for 73 percent of people, finances are actually the number-one root of stress—even more so than politics (59 percent), work (49 percent) and family (46 percent). And, even if financial woes aren’t all-consuming, further research from the American Psychological Association, 72 percent of Americans report feeling stressed about money at least some of the time.
In other words: We’re all in this together.
2. Build a better budget.
One surefire way to get a hold over your finances is to build a budget—a feasible budget. You can do this by following the very simple 50/30/20 rule, for example.
The 50/30/20 rule divides your after-tax income into three categories:
- 50 percent for your needs (like your rent or mortgage payments, car insurance, health care, etc.)
- 30 percent for your wants (like those morning cups of coffee, that Spotify Premium subscription, travel plans, etc.)
- 20 percent for your savings and investments (like your investments, savings, IRA contributions, etc.)
Following this rule would mean that your necessities should consume half of your income, and you can divvy up the rest of your disposable after-tax income to cover your current lifestyle and to save for your future.
It’s also important to prioritize your wants so you can better afford the non-necessities that mean the most. For example, cutting recurring charges for subscriptions you seldom use or making your coffee at home instead of grabbing it on the go can create space for more dinners out and weekend getaways.
3. Make a financial plan.
Making a financial plan is critical because it puts your financial situation into perspective. Deciding where you want to be in five or 10 years is the first step in understanding how exactly you can get there.
The plan should essentially be a list of your future goals broken down into attainable milestones. Breaking your bigger goals down into smaller ones can help to keep you motivated. Ample research supports that small wins are powerful.
4. Join supportive communities.
The truth is that money talk is taboo. But ever more people are itching to connect with others on similar journeys or who have walked in their shoes, financially speaking. At the end of the day, we’re all only human—and support is a basic human need. Support groups are cropping up across social media channels to fill this need. So join communities that boast safe spaces in which you feel comfortable discussing all things money management.
Q.ai’s Discord channel is an ideal community to start. The Discord server is an online community that’s open to everyone who wants to learn more about Q.ai or investing, in general. It’s currently the only place where you can access Q.ai’s AI-powered investment portfolios, including tickers and weekly performance updates. Members of the community also have access to an investing advice channel, a newsfeed with market commentary, and product updates.
5. Invest with AI.
We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: AI is changing the investment game. Investing, in the first place, will help your money make more money than it would sitting in a savings account. After all, investments typically see average annual returns of 10 percent. And the sooner you get started, the more time your money has to grow due to compounded interest and market upswings over time.
AI takes it one step further by empowering fintech consumers to make more educated and informed decisions thanks to deep learning algorithms that crunch the numbers for them. Q.ai, for example, leverages the power of AI to smartly allocate and rebalance your investments. You never have to lift a finger—but you also don’t have to sacrifice the control over your finances you’ve been working so hard to gain with this list.
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