Sources of Stress
- Prices rise but your income stays the same
- Cut‐backs, layoffs, or other restructuring creates job instability
- You feel frustration with family members’ spending or debt
- You have medical, automobile or household expenses that pile up
- An unexpected event or crisis creates money problems for the family (illness, death, divorce, etc.)
Take Care of Your Body
Try to eat a healthy and balanced diet.
Take time for an enjoyable physical activity to relieve stress.
Get enough sleep. We …
Think about the type of skills or equipment you have that others may need. Can you change the oil in their car? Make a birthday cake? Clean their gutters?Consider that your time may be helpful to others if you have free time when they do not. You can find odd jobs in the classifieds section of local newspapers or web sites like Craig’s List.
Trading goods or services with others may not yield cash, but it …
Debt management involves developing one or more strategies to help a debtor get that debt under control.
Should you shop for a lower interest rate on your debt?
• This can be a good option, if it substantially reduces your monthly payments and the refinancing is not too costly. Inquire whether other higher cost debts can be rolled into the lower cost loan.
What if you can’t pay your bills
• Prioritize your debt. Keeping a roof over your head …
Planning Shopping Trips
• Keep a pad and pencil handy for jotting down foods as they run low. Encourage all family members to add to the list.
• Don’t shop with a hungry or tired child, or when you are hungry.
At the Store
• Stick to your shopping list; avoid impulse purchases. However, watch for “in store” specials that you know you can use.
• When buying a food for the first time, buy a small amount in case …
Prevent Food Waste
• Cut down on the amount of food you throw away; freeze leftovers or use them in recipes like soups or casseroles. aInstead of thinking “leftovers” – think “planned overs.” Have a plan to use excess food from one meal, whether by using it within a few days or freezing it for the future.
• Take leftovers for lunch instead of eating out. Store properly to keep foods safe to eat.
• Before buying an unfamiliar food, …
An emergency fund is money set aside in a readily accessible savings account for unanticipated events such as unemployment, medical bills, and car repairs. A sum of money to cover basic living costs for three to six months is recommended.
Accumulating Liquid Assets
• These are assets that can be easily converted to cash.
• The majority of these funds should be in accounts that have easy access, like checking accounts.
• Regular or passbook savings and money market accounts …
Utility Budget Plans
You can work with your service provider so that your monthly bill is based on an average of the previous year’s monthly bills. This is usually called “level billing.”
However, if you exceed the budgeted amount, you could end up owing money at the end of the current year or your fixed payment will increase next year. In some cases, a utility company may make an adjustment during the year, if useage is greatly exceeding the estimated …
A net worth statement, sometimes called a financial statement, measures wealth or how much we are worth – at one point in time.
What are your assets? Assets include cash and other items of value that can be converted to cash. Some assets are more difficult than others to convert to cash. Be careful not to overvalue personal belongings, such as televisions and furniture as these often lose value over time.
• How much do you have in cash or …
Importance of Communication
• When the family is facing tough times, family
members need to lean on each other more
than usual. Talk to each other respectfully and listen to
each other’s concerns.
• Conflict and disagreements are normal, especially when family members are stressed. Give each person a chance to share his or her view of things, without interrupting or judging. Keep an open mind and listen for new information and good ideas.
• In tough times, family schedules …
People respond to a personal crisis with many feelings: anger, anxiety, outrage, self doubt. They may be hostile – lashing out at those closest to them. Or, they may become moody and depressed. Their tension may show up as restlessness, loss of appetite, loss of interest in sex, insomnia, and feelings of apathy and exhaustion. While some of these symptoms may be unpleasant, they are normal, predictable reactions of people experiencing a loss or critical change in their lives.…