Money Stress is Killing Me?

Have you ever thought, “Money stress is killing me.” Turns out, it could very well be. George G breaks down why that is and what to do about it!

May 21, 2024 | Blogs, Podcast

About the Episode

Money stress is killing me. Is that possible? Could that be true? Turns out, like most other things, too much of anything is a really bad thing- particularly money stress. 

George G talks about what money stress does to our bodies, and what you can do to get rid of yours!

 

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George Grombacher

Host

Episode Transcript

Today is letter days letter comes to us from little Janice little Janice writes, Dear George G. Financial stress, money issues seem to be really crushing my parents, it’s causing a lot of stress and anxiety and financial stress and anxiety actually hurt them? And if so what can I do to help? Well, little Janice, I am sure sorry to hear that money can be really, really difficult. It’s really hard for individuals, it’s really hard for for couples for married couples, for people who are dating just people in a relationship that could it’s hard for one person, it’s even harder for two people to come together. And there’s a lot of demands on us these days. So certainly not a surprising thing to hear. And it’s not uncommon to hear that we’re experiencing money problems. And you are right to be thoughtful, and trying to be thinking about ways that you can help them and things that can be done to address this, because, like most problems, it’s not going to go away on its own needs to needs to be addressed. And these days, we are so accustomed to treating the symptoms and taking a pill, or injection to solve all of our problems, instead of actually getting down to the root cause and trying to address that root cause which is what we all know that we’re supposed to do. This isn’t groundbreaking stuff, but just kind of where we’re at. So one of the challenges with money is that, you know, it’s touches every aspect of our lives. And it’s not right, when we go into one room in the house, that’s when we feel it. It’s just follows us around from our work to our hobbies to our family life, weekends on Mondays and Tuesdays and Wednesdays and Saturdays and Sundays and everywhere in between. And unfortunately, behind actual infidelity. financial matters are one of the leading causes for divorce in America. So not trying to ruin your day, little Janice, but money is ruining a lot of people’s days these days. So what’s the jumping off point? Unfortunately, the answer is yes. Financial stress can definitely hurt your parents, I could probably is in way more ways than I think that we realize it’s causing more problems than just the fights that they might be having, or the arguments that they might be having. Stress is a real thing, which I think we all know, and anxiety, all these things can spiral into depression, and just lots of really, really, really bad things. And that’s what I want to talk about today is addressing financial stress and dressing anxiety and dressing, potential depression, where it starts from what it is what can be done about it, all these kinds of things. So have you ever thought about what depression really is, think about just the word depress, kind of push down, push, squeeze all the air out of if you’re trying to get the air out of a bag or something like that. You need to create a little bit of a break and seal and push it all out to press it all out and then seal it back up. Just you take all the air out of something. And that’s not a good thing. And think about some some synonyms for depression. There’s a lot of them, you know to oppress to sad and to burden to worry to trouble to project the bum out the bothered away down to torture to concern disturb. Distress discouraged dismay. discomposed disquiet freakout What about some antonyms? What would you think some antonyms so the opposite of what I just talked about of depression, I would think that you’re breathing life into it. You’re pumping air into it, you’re filling it up. You’re lightening your brightening things up you’re rejoicing, you’re stimulating you’re in lit livening, you’re invigorating, you’re reassuring, you’re booing you’re exhilarating. And those are way better. Those are way better words and those other ones. Now, what’s so bad about stress and depression? Is it obvious, just as bad? These are bad things like that. That is a unanimous thing, that depression is a bad thing. But I don’t think it’s obvious as to what really is going on what it is that makes it so dangerous. And one Have those things something called cortisol, which is a steroid that is produced by our adrenal glands, which are at the top of each one of our kidneys. And cortisol plays a really important role and a lot of our bodily functions, particularly in response to stress. So, cortisol, they call it a stress hormone because it increases in response to physical or emotional stress. It is released by the hypothalamus pituitary adrenal axis, the HPA axis, and it goes like this, it goes a little something like this, a body perceives that we’re experiencing physical or emotional stress, the hypothalamus releases core to coat drop in releasing hormone CRH, there is then pituitary activation. Then there’s this adrenal response. So the all those words I just talked about, that travels through the bloodstream stream goes to the adrenal glands, which then prompts them to release cortisol. There you go. Other factors, that, that that release, it includes or it levels cortisol, fluctuated throughout the day, naturally, just because of our circadian rhythms, peaks in the early morning gradually decreases throughout the day. Physical activity can influence cortisol, we get hertz, that’ll influence it. But it’s doing a lot cortisol in our body, it regulates our metabolism, it helps regulate our blood sugar. It helps with immune responses, it has a strong anti inflammatory effect, suppressing the immune system to prevent it from overreacting. So that’s a good thing helps with our blood pressure helps healthy maintenance and regulation of our blood pressure helps. It helps us cope with with that stress. And it also helps with our memory functions and cognitive functions, things like that. But the problem is, when we have prolonged or chronic high levels of cortisol, that’s when we start having negative or detrimental impacts to our body. So immune suppression takes place, so we are more susceptible to infections. When we have sustained chronic high levels of cortisol, we gain weight, especially around our midsection. So if you’re stressed out, trying to lose weight, I can’t get rid of this belly fat. Well, it’s this high levels of cortisol going on in your body weight gain, hypertension, which is elevated blood pressure, hyper glycaemia. Similar to type two, type two diabetes, can have muscle weakness and actual breakdown of muscle tissue can increase or decrease bone density, increasing the risk of osteoporosis, it hurts our moods, anxiety, depression, cognitive impairments, and it can lead to bad sleep. So cortisol is vital for managing stress, and maintaining homeostasis. But that’s the key thing is homeostasis. That’s when stuffs gone, right. It’s like, yeah, the fish tank at home when it’s clean, homeostasis when it’s green stuffs wrong. So proper management of stress and anxiety and a healthy lifestyle that helps us to do that. So little Janice, how does this apply to your parents and financial stress? Well, it has an impact, significant impact on your cortisol due to its persistence, and persistence, and often overwhelming nature, because talking about the beginning, follows us around everywhere. Money stress is like a rain cloud following us around or the wet blanket that is just covering us all the time. So financial difficulties, it’s really interesting, the same part of our brain that responds to mortal danger is the same part of our brain that responds to financial difficulty. So when he’s not smoking a building, part of your brain that’s triggered and says Get out. Well, that same part of our brain that responds to financial stress. So that activates the release of cortisol, which we were talking about earlier, and all those big medical terms that I was throwing around, sometimes correctly, sometimes incorrectly. That just financial stress is causing our pituitary gland to produce more of these things, which then prompts the adrenal gland to release more cortisol. So financial stress, unfortunately for many of us is a chronic thing. So it’s not like it’s short term, and that

it just releases more and more cortisol, which causes that chronic problems, that bad stuff that I was just talking about. So bad changes to our immune system, metabolic changes, mental health, there’s all these problems, bad sleep, poor cognitive function, it’s hard on our body, I’d mentioned hypertension and high blood pressure. Lots of really bad things. These are all really terrible things. super shitty. So what do we do? What do we do little jabs? How do we manage financial stress to mitigate negative effects of cortisol bring ourselves back to homeostasis. That’s what we want. So in order to do that, it’s essential to do simple blocking and tackling things. Now, the word just the word simple just came out of my mouth. Nothing is simple about this stuff. It’s really easy. But none of it’s simple. Or maybe it’s simple, but it’s not easy. That’s the better way to put it. This stuff is simple, but it’s not easy. You understand you’re supposed to have a budget, you understand you’re supposed to look at your cash flow, and manage everything. Have a budget, update the budget, track my cash flow, balance my checkbook, all this stuff, setting financial goals, planning for emergencies, having plans in general, having goals in general, these are super simple, but they’re not easy. But this is how we’re doing it. This is how we do it. If you feel like you’re drowning, and you are underwater, when it comes to money, and you are stressed out over it, go back to the basics, create a clear and realistic budget, set some financial goals, start planning for emergency, Do not avoid looking at your bank accounts or your spending. Working with financial professionals of some kind, can be a really good thing you don’t need to. But if you’re not going to do this stuff, if you’re not going to put a budget together, a financial professional can help you to do that. So it can be valuable, totally up to you. Then just having a healthier lifestyle. I don’t know what your parents are doing. I don’t know what their lifestyle is, like, I don’t know what their nutrition program is like if they have one, or if they have any kind of an exercise program or strength training. But having a healthy balanced diet, getting exercise, making sure you get enough sleep, that can really help manage your stress and your cortisol, they have support, you can get your parents to have open and honest conversations about their finances with each other, with other loved ones, people that they trust, this can be a really powerful way to help alleviate financial stress. And that can be a really uncomfortable thing, I get it. But an important step. Obviously, if people are experiencing depression, then there are many other important interventions that your actual medical doctor, medical professionals, counselors, therapists, those are people that can help. And a lot of the time a some kind of medical intervention can be a really, really helpful thing in helping people to deal with depression. So certainly involve in looped in your doctor and medical professionals. So fundamentally, financial stress can lead to chronic elevations of cortisol levels. And that those have which have been talking about really bad, really negative impacts on our overall health. So the more we can do the simple things. That’s what I’m interested in doing. But let’s get specific into what we can actually do. Or in terms of a list of priorities, I think that the number one thing that we need to do and why Uncle Dave Dave Ramsey is such an important person is he helps people move from red to black. That just means that when you’re in the red, you’re in debt. So you’re behind, we need to get to the black. That means we need to get to even so getting out of credit card debt. That’s one of the keys here. Because credit card debt can feel inescapable. It is a huge cause of stress and anxiety which can lead to depression which leads to elevated cortisol and chronic cortisol levels in our body which does all the bad things I’ve just been talking about. So get mad at it. Courage, your pokes, play some Dave Ramsey in the background. We have a free get a debt course that you can have access to your parents can have access to help you put a plan together for getting out of debt. But if you are experiencing financial stress, anxiety, negativity, feel like you’re depressed, whatever it might be. You can put a plan together, create a plan for getting out of debt. might take you a couple of years. probably will, but you’ll be on track, you’ll be taking positive, proactive steps towards getting what it is that you want. And then, and while while you’re doing that, be focused on financial security. I want everybody to get what they want, I want you to be prosperous, to get rich, whatever you want. But we can’t get there until we first find financial security. And we do that by getting out of debt, starting to pay ourselves first, which means putting our financial needs ahead of everybody else’s, which is exactly where they should be. Just start putting some money away. Right, they’ll be saved money for your retirement for your other financial priorities. And then I want you to start working to get an emergency fund set up. People say three to six months, I say six months, says get six months worth of cash on hand in an account that’s separate from your everyday checking account. Once you have that, once you add a credit card debt, I think that that’s financial peace of mind. Truly, take a deep breath, let the tension out of your shoulders. Lower those cortisol levels for God’s sakes, then it’s moving towards financial confidence. That’s a superpower for sure. And I’m confident moving forward standing up straight, got a little bounce in my step. Not depressed, full of life, full of air full of possibility full of hope for the future, all these really positive, virtuous things. It’s what I want for you little Janice, it’s what I want for your parents. So I want for everybody. So reality is unfortunately, that financial problems can in fact kill us can have a horrible impact on our lives, on our our wellness, on our health, our relationships, every aspect of our lives. So the more we can do, the faster we can do it to get out from underneath the weight of financial problems. Moving from red to black, finding financial security and financial prosperity. I need peace of mind than confidence. Like that. That’s the game right there. Thanks for the letter, little Janice. Hopefully this is helpful. Take advantage of the resources that we have money alignment academy.com Take advantage. The free goals course create a compelling vision for your future parents in this example, to think about your values that will help you make better priorities, how you allocate your most important resources, in this example, money. And then finally, the program or the course on how to get out of debt can help you do all these things. They’re free, how exciting you can also get a free copy the purpose book while you were there, will help you to get clarity on all this stuff. So thanks again for the letter little Janice. Finally, a friendly reminder. It’s never going to be anybody more interested in your financial success than you are. So act accordingly.

 

 

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