Mindfulness For Financial Stress And Anxiety

How Mindfulness Can Help Manage Financial Stress and Anxiety

At a time when many — not just in Australia but around the globe — are grappling with the heavy burden of financial stress, it’s essential to acknowledge that you are not alone if you find yourself among them. The ever-increasing household costs, mounting rent and mortgage payments, and the relentless tide of inflation can create a sense of overwhelming anxiety when it comes to managing our finances. However, the good news is that there is a path towards relief and resilience. In this blog post, we’ll delve into the transformative power of mindfulness and how it can help you navigate the challenges of financial stress and anxiety. To get you started, we’ve included seven invaluable mindfulness techniques that can equip you with the tools needed to build a more peaceful and stable financial future.

Important note: The information shared within this article and video is not a replacement for professional assistance. If you, or someone you know, is in a crisis, please reach out to one of the 24/7 helplines listed below: 

– Suicide Call Back Service: 1300 659 467
– Lifeline: 13 11 14
– Open Arms: 1800-011-046

Moreover, we strongly encourage you to seek guidance from a certified financial advisor when making financial decisions as this article does not contain financial advice. Be sure to explore the resources provided in this blog post and connect with qualified professionals who can offer the support and guidance you may need. Your well-being is our top priority.

[VIDEO] Mindfulness Tools For Financial Stress and Anxiety

Watch as Body & Mind psychologist, Jessica, shares 7 mindfulness techniques that can help lessen the impact of financial stress and anxiety. For best viewing, click on the video below and watch it in full screen. Alternatively, you can watch or listen to the video on Facebook here.

Understanding Financial Stress

Financial stress can originate from a multitude of sources, including income instability, high levels of debt, insufficient savings, unforeseen expenses, limited financial literacy, living beyond our means, job insecurity, and even differences in financial perspectives within relationships. But it’s crucial to recognise that financial stress isn’t solely psychological and emotional; it can also manifest as physical strain. This stress can contribute to conditions such as anxiety, depression, insomnia, and even physical health issues. What sets financial stress apart is its close connection to our basic survival needs. Our financial well-being directly influences our ability to secure shelter, access healthcare, maintain security, and make choices about our future. This survival link makes managing financial stress particularly challenging, emphasising the importance of mindfulness in addressing it.

Common Unhelpful Approaches

When confronting financial stress, it’s natural to grapple with a range of challenging emotions, including shame, loss, depression, and fear. It’s not uncommon to feel overwhelmed or powerless in the face of financial difficulties, and in response, we often resort to coping mechanisms that can be unproductive and even harmful. These counterproductive strategies may involve avoidance and denial, impulsive spending, isolation, self-blame, emotional spending, and neglecting the importance of budgeting. Recognising and addressing these tendencies is a crucial step toward more effectively managing financial stress and cultivating a healthier relationship with our finances.

The Role of Mindfulness In Managing Financial Stress and Anxiety

Undoubtedly, mindfulness can serve as a valuable tool in the face of financial stress. While it’s important to recognise that mindfulness alone won’t miraculously change your financial situation, it can profoundly ease the emotional burden that comes with it. By embracing mindfulness practices, you can gain a better understanding of your reactions and emotions, allowing you to respond to financial challenges with greater clarity and resilience. This heightened awareness empowers you to make more intentional financial choices and seek out solutions with a calmer, more balanced mindset, ultimately contributing to a healthier and more sustainable relationship with your finances.

7 Mindfulness Techniques For Financial Stress

The following seven techniques, when integrated into your daily life, can help you navigate financial challenges with greater clarity and composure, empowering you to make more mindful and sustainable financial decisions.

1. Practise Self-Compassion

The first step is to embrace the power of self-compassion and acknowledge that you are genuinely doing your best with the resources at your disposal. This realisation opens up a greater sense of space for you to navigate, process, heal, and take meaningful action in your life.

Begin by acknowledging the sources of your stress without burdening yourself with judgement. Additionally, recognise that your feelings and circumstances are valid, and by approaching them with a compassionate mindset, you pave the way for a more supportive and effective journey towards personal growth and financial well-being.

2. Schedule Worry Time

Secondly, instead of attempting to suppress your financial stress, consider a more constructive approach by allocating a specific time each day to address your concerns. Designate this time as your “worry time,” and during it, grant yourself permission to acknowledge and validate your anxieties. Once you’ve given your concerns the recognition they deserve, you can then transition into problem-solving mode.

Use this dedicated time to identify practical steps for tackling each financial issue. Remember to set manageable and realistic goals, each with specific timeframes in mind. By breaking down your concerns into smaller, achievable tasks, you can make progress in a more organised and effective manner, ultimately alleviating some of the stress associated with financial matters.

3. Identify Your Triggers

Triggers play a crucial role in influencing our behaviours and coping mechanisms, as they are the events or emotions that precede a specific response. If you’ve pinpointed unhelpful financial behaviours in your life, such as impulsive spending or avoidance, pay close attention to what thoughts, emotions, or events trigger these behaviours.

Once you identify these triggers, you can gain valuable insight into the underlying causes of your financial choices. This awareness serves as a starting point for implementing effective strategies to address and manage these triggers more skillfully. In time, you can take proactive steps to create a healthier and more sustainable relationship with your finances.

4. Practise Mindful Spending

Surprisingly, it’s possible to incorporate mindfulness into your financial spending as well. This involves taking a deliberate approach to your purchases. Pause and ask yourself whether each potential expenditure is truly necessary. Ask, “Does it align with my core values?” If you find yourself uncertain, it’s a good practice to refrain from immediate purchases. Instead, consider adding the item to a list and taking some time to reflect on it.

Allow yourself the space to sleep on the decision. The following day, revisit the idea and evaluate whether it still feels like a wise and meaningful choice. If it does, you can proceed with the purchase confidently. If, on the other hand, it no longer aligns with your financial goals and values, use this as an opportunity to devise a plan that will guide you toward achieving this goal more thoughtfully and sustainably. This method empowers you to make mindful and intentional spending decisions that resonate with your long-term financial well-being.

5. Embrace a Gratitude Practice

Additionally, extensive research has consistently demonstrated the positive effects of maintaining a daily gratitude practice on your mental and emotional health. Especially in times of financial stress, cultivating a gratitude practice can be a transformative tool. By shifting your focus towards appreciation for what you currently have rather than dwelling on what may be lacking, you can effectively diminish the daily stressors that weigh you down. This practice also empowers you to adapt more gracefully to challenging circumstances, enhancing your resilience in the face of financial difficulties.

6. Focus on Relaxation Techniques

Incorporating daily mindfulness and relaxation practices into your routine plays a vital role in nurturing a tranquil state of mind and a relaxed body. Utilising tools like Calm’s Sleep Stories or engaging in a Body Scan can prove to be highly effective in ensuring a restful night’s sleep. Practices like walking meditation or other mindful moving can help reset your nervous system throughout the day. Moreover, incorporating breathwork techniques can reduce your body’s instinctive fight or flight response when faced with triggers.

Remember, your mindfulness tools are always readily available to provide support. It’s essential to keep reaching for them and make your regular mindfulness practice a priority in your daily life. These techniques can be your allies in maintaining a peaceful and composed state of mind.

You may also like: Everyday Mindfulness Techniques

7. Take Mindful Action

The final technique is taking mindful action. When doing so, it’s crucial to tailor your action to what aligns not only with your specific circumstances but your values too. For example, you may start by developing a personalised budget or identifying areas for expense reduction. Similarly, you might like to establish an emergency fund or explore opportunities to increase your income. And of course, consulting with financial professionals, implementing debt reduction strategies or setting up automated savings are other examples.

Valuable resources, such as those provided by renowned financial experts like Scott Pape from The Barefoot Investor and Ramit Sethi from My Rich Life, can offer guidance and support on your journey.

Australian Resources for Financial Stress

Additionally, the following resources offer free or low-cost support in Australia: 

  • Financial Counselling Australia: A national peak body for financial counselling services, offering free, confidential advice and support.
  • National Debt Helpline: A government-funded service providing free financial counselling and information to help manage debt.
  • MoneySmart: An online resource offering financial guidance, tools, and calculators to help Australians make informed financial decisions.
  • No Interest Loans Scheme (NILS): Provides low-income individuals and families access to safe, fair, and affordable credit.
  • Moneycare: Financial counselling and support services provided by the Salvation Army to assist with budgeting and debt management.
  • St. Vincent de Paul Society: Offers assistance with bills, food, and other essentials to individuals and families in need.
  • MoneySmart Indigenous Australians: Tailored financial information and resources for Indigenous Australians, covering budgeting, savings, and managing debt.
  • Centrelink: Government agency providing financial support, including income assistance and various allowances, for eligible individuals and families.

Throughout this process, remember to practise self-compassion as you seek assistance or explore new financial tools. Continue to embrace mindful acceptance as you take these steps toward managing your financial stress, and always be kind to yourself along the way.


In conclusion, the path to managing financial stress through mindfulness is a powerful journey towards improving your overall well-being and your financial stability. By embracing your emotions, dedicating time to worry, recognising your triggers, adopting mindful budgeting practices, and nurturing gratitude, you can regain control over your financial stress and foster a more positive relationship with your finances.

It’s important to understand that you don’t have to navigate the challenges of financial stress on your own. Don’t hesitate to seek professional guidance when necessary; it can be a crucial step towards creating a brighter financial future.

Thank you for taking the time to read this blog post and for your courage in seeking out solutions. Always remember your mental health is of utmost importance, and you are a valuable individual in this journey towards a healthier financial outlook.

At Body & Mind, we are committed to supporting your mental and emotional well-being. We invite you to explore our programs, which offer zero-wait access to telehealth psychology and evidence-based mindfulness practices. By taking proactive steps to enhance your resilience through mindfulness, you’ll not only weather life’s storms with greater ease but also unlock your full potential for a fulfilling and balanced life. Learn more here.

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