The world had been spun around a bit too fast for many people to catch a moment of peace these last few days. One of the areas that we as individuals, families, and businesses are feeling a host of feelings about is money. Our currency and employment systems allow us to buy things, provides some security and provides us with choices. But what happens when we didn’t save up enough because it wasn’t possible, or we saved up for a rainy day not a tsunami? What about if we saved, but the items money sometimes can buy are not available?
What do we do?
We go into a primal mode of activating our fight or flight response. This also extends that fleeing inward feeling of wanting to be numbed out or frozen. It can get our thoughts racing and spinning with no actions just thoughts. Our brain’s amygdala reacts to a threat. The hypothalamus tells the sympathetic nervous system to let out the adrenaline. The adrenal cortex gladly releases cortisol so we can stay alert. This is a beautiful system that can work well when we are hiking, and we need to figure out which way is best to avoid the poisonous snake on our path.
The hard part here is that threat is invisible, is global, and is for a much longer time of decision making than the half hour along our path on the hike with the snake. We may start acting in ways we couldn’t even think about. It’s like the gas pedal in our car is stuck and we can’t get it to slow down. We might be more agitated or think less clearly after a while. Decisions we normally wouldn’t make, big ones, that might alter the course of the rest of our lives start to look good.
That can happen with our thoughts about money and resources. We might cash in retirement funds or we might stock up on supplies that would be enough to last an entire village for a year leaving those around us with nothing. You cannot make the best decisions for yourself while in full hyped up mode for days and weeks to come.
A re-set for yourself for the next few weeks
- Stand still for a moment and survey how your body feels. Notice which parts are tense and stuck and which parts are relaxed.
- Take a deep breath, hold and exhale.
- Let your thoughts flow and swirl but don’t action on them
- Try to let your body move or flow and consider the “Shake it off technique” by Dr. David Berceli or consider Relaxation videos by Dr. Herbert Benson
A re-set for your finances for the next few weeks
- List out what you owe in the next day, next week, this month, and next three months.
- Review if any of these items are up for consideration by companies, local, federal, or state deferment such as a home mortgage, a student loan, or a cell phone bill.
- Listen to a Money program such as Dave Ramsey as his team will be keeping up to date with the news.
- Be very careful about what you sign and the terms especially when you are stressed and tired. There are moments where you want to help yourself through today, that will cost you hundreds in the future.
- Pay what you can and make arrangements accordingly as you go along in a calmer fashion. There is No Shame is asking for assistance from others as this is not a moment of pride, but one of global care.
Get mental wellness help if you need it. Please do not go this alone. We may be asked to socially isolate physically, but you can always reach out somehow. Look to those around your or call a crisis line. Text “CONNECT” to 855-11 or call Call: 800-273-TALK