Do you stay up late at night against your will, worrying about money? Financial anxiety has the power to do more than ruin a single night’s sleep. Months of tossing and turning can have a serious impact on your health and mental well-being.
Luckily, you don’t have to spend the rest of your life counting sheep, exhausted and burnt out. You can get some quality shut-eye by cleaning up your sleep hygiene and planning for the future. Keep scrolling to find out more.
How Does Poor Sleep Affect Your Health?
One night of poor sleep can leave you feeling and looking like a zombie, going about your day through a haze. It’s annoying, but nothing to worry about as long as you catch up on your Zs.
It becomes a problem when you’re experiencing issues falling or staying asleep every night. A chronic lack of sleep can negatively impact your physical and mental health.
That’s because sleep helps regulate emotions and process information.
Without it, you might struggle with your emotions, memory, and critical thinking skills. You won’t be as alert, and you’ll be more prone to making mistakes. At this point, you’re at a higher risk of being in an accident on the road.
A severe sleep deficit will eventually weaken your immune system and increase your chances of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, depression, and obesity.
How to Manage Your Finances to Limit Stress
The trick to getting more shut-eye is targeting the financial issues that are keeping you up at night. Whether you’re living paycheck to paycheck or worried over debt, follow these tips to help you handle your financial problems and reclaim a good night’s rest.
1. Follow a Budget
A budget plays two important roles in your finances:
- It highlights your cashflow. This gives insights into how you’re spending your money each month. You’ll see how much you earn, and how much you spend — and where. In some cases, you’ll notice some expenses you can eliminate to free up more cash for savings.
- It establishes a plan. A budget is your plan of attack. You can organize your money to help you achieve your goals. And if something isn’t working, you can tweak it to help you get back on track.
Now, if you’re living paycheck to paycheck, you probably don’t have a lot of the fun/unnecessary expenses that waste your money. What you’re left with is a list of essentials that you can’t stop paying.
However, you might be able to reduce what you pay on housing costs, utilities, and groceries with some dedication and hard work.
- Find out what you need to do to move to a cheaper area or move in with roommates.
- Compare utility providers to learn if there’s a better package available.
- Call your utility providers to find out how you can lower your bill or reschedule payments.
- Control your energy bills by reducing energy usage with a greener lifestyle
- Eat well by using coupons, buying frozen or canned produce, and following a budget meal plan.
2. Make a Plan to Tackle Debt
Part of a balanced budget will help you sock away cash into your consumer debt. You should treat a cash advance, line of credit, credit card, and any installment loans (auto, student, and personal loans) like rent or utilities.
Making the minimum scheduled payments on these accounts will keep them in good standing, avoid late fines, and prevent damage to your credit score.
But if you want to keep your debt out of the bedroom, you need to use your budget to put more money towards your installment loans and lines of credit. Any extra cash above and beyond the minimums will help reduce how long these debts weigh on your mind and ruin sleep.
But before you send an extra or early payment, check in with your loan contract.
According to MoneyKey, only some online direct lenders will allow you to make extra payments to pay your principal down faster. Others may not have such lenient policies regarding extra payments, and you might get dinged by a pre-payment charge for the trouble.
6 Ways to Improve Your Sleep Hygiene
Living paycheck to paycheck and dealing with installment loan debt can keep you up at night. But they aren’t the only culprits for a poor night’s sleep. Bad bedtime habits might be making it harder to fall asleep.
Making subtle adjustments to your night and sleeping arrangements may help you relax so that you’re ready and rested to tackle your money issues in the morning.
1. Limit Caffeine Intake in the Afternoon
Knocking back a latte or energy drink in the late afternoon could spell trouble at bedtime. Try to limit caffeine after noon.
2. Remove Screens from Your Bedroom
Your mobile’s screen can trick your body into thinking it’s not time for bed. Its blue light messes with your circadian rhythm and delays melatonin, which might make you stay up longer than you want.
3. Set a Sleep Schedule and Stick to It
It’s hard to log serious snoozing hours if you’re constantly waking up and going to sleep at odd hours. Your body likes routine. Try to go to bed at the same time every night and get up when your alarm goes off.
4. Only Use Your Bedroom to Sleep
If you haven’t been sleeping well, the allure of hanging around in bed all day can be too hard to resist. The temptation may be even stronger if you work from home.
Unfortunately, this bad habit could come at the cost of your sleep quality. Working from bed makes it hard to keep work and relaxation time separate. Your comfy cozy replacement for your cubicle only serves to disrupt sleep and ruin your productivity.
5. Exercise Throughout the Day
Burning off extra energy throughout the day can help you fall asleep faster. Tire yourself out by following a regular fitness plan that gets your heart pumping.
Sleep can be a nightly struggle if you have bills and debt weighing heavily on your mind, but a good night’s sleep is possible.
Start with the easiest stuff first. Focus on removing any obstacles preventing you from resting well by improving your sleep hygiene. Follow the five tips above to set yourself up for success in the bedroom.
Once you form healthy sleeping habits, move on to your finances. Draw up a budget to see what you need to do to address your biggest money worry.
Overhauling your nighttime habits while fixing your finances will help you sleep better at night.