Money and anxiety

HI Everyone. I'm having a bit of a rubbish day today so thought I would ask if anybody has the same issue/any advice? I've felt really positive with my attitude towards anxiety. I haven't had a major panic attack for as long as I can remember which is the main thing, but I am finding I still can't switch off with one thing...anxiety over money. It is ruining my days and slowly my life. I have had a week off work this week, just annual leave, to spend with my partner. We went to scotland for the first half of the week and it was lovely. I had to spend quite a bit of money on walking equipment and boots before I went which I just brushed over as I knew I needed them, however I have come back and I feel bound by the sense of not wanting to spend any money. My bf asked what I'd like to do. I'd actually like to do a bit of cooking, get my hair done and buy myself some new clothes, but when I think about going out and spending money I actually feel quite sick. I feel myself getting worked up because in my head, I've convinced myself I don't have enough money to do this. On paper I do have the money, but I can't make that link that says 'it's OK to spend what you have in your bank, that's what you work for'. Because of this I've spent the past two days we've been home looking into all the things I want to do, then shutting off and feeling rubbish because I can't do them, it's making me miserable and ruining my week off and my bf's. It's like I can't concentrate on anything else. I hate this because I feel like I can't even treat myself. I've wasted so many years feeling like this when I should be enjoying myself but it doesn't matter how hard I try, I can't stop it.

Does anybody else feel like this? Part of me is thinking I should just really go against what I am feeling and buy what it is I am looking at and deal with the consequences as they arise (although I am thinking there won't actually be any bad consequences - It's probably all in my head) I just have this niggle where I think, I bet if I spend the money, next week something will come up and I'll need it and I'll wish I never spent it.

x

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5 Replies

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  • Hi, I too sometimes feel like this. Where do you think it stems from for you? For me it's because as a child my family were very poor and I'd sometimes hear conversations that weren't for children's ears about potentially losing our house etc and I knew that my mum went without clothes and food a lot for us kids. So for me I sometimes can't get out of the fear of that. Fifi

  • Hi Fifi,

    Thank you for your reply. I actually think I have adopted this way of thinking from my Dad. He's terribly stringent with money when he needn't be so I guess I've grown up with it. I just can't break the habit of feeling that way about it. It makes me really miserable and I feel like I have no life because of it, but I know it's all my own doing. No idea how to get out of that way of thinking.

    x

  • Hiya

    Yup - I have the same thing - it really stresses me out. Again - I think it comes from hearing conversations when i was small about lack of money and arguments over it. Plus I've been signed off for a while so there's hardly any money anyways!

    I tend to buy second hand and/or freecycle as then I don't feel guilty.

    I guess the only other option is really doing a breakdown of monthly incomings and see how much you have left over for buying stuff...that way you know you've got it spare and you can treat yourself. But easier said than done with anxiety I know...

  • Quite often we learn this behaviour as kids. All those conversations we hear that we're not meant to (Fifi_loves_rosie), or your own example of "My dad was stringent with money, even when he needn't be". Add a sprinkle (or overkill, depending how you look at it) of the media telling us tales of woe about austerity measures and you have a recipe for money worries, even when it may not be relevant to you.

    Try and STOPP! - Terrible spelling, but it's an acronym with 5 Steps, which will hopefully make sense in a minute or two.

    1 - Stop

    2 - Take a breath

    3 - Observe - describe your feelings, thoughts (images in your head), body sensations & triggers.

    4 - Pull back/Put in some Perspective - What's the bigger picture? Is this fact or opinion? How would someone else see this? What would I tell my best friend if they were thinking this way?

    5 - Practice what works - What is the best thing to do right now - for me, for others, for the situation.

    I use this a lot with my clients (and also on myself). It can be really helpful and I hope you find it of some use.

  • Mandy, I think its wise to be careful with money...... just go with what feels best to you, sending you best wishes, Louisa ......

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