Three big words are being thrown around in the news with quite a bit of frequency right now: inflation, correction and most recently, recession. Regardless of what kind of financial shape we are in, this can affect our feelings of financial clarity and security. If you find this news (and this years rising prices and declines markets) is weighing you down or keeping you up at night, here are some steps you can take that can help:
- Turn off the TV (and go for a walk?). The market has been down, inflation has been up and there's been lots of talk about the "R" word lately. Recessions happen. It can feel uncomfortable, but unlike what we may hear on the evening news, it's not the end of the world….or necessarily even a sign that the market will "crash" in the days or weeks to come. In a recent FORBES article* in fact they reported that "In over half of the 13 years with recessions since World War II, however, the S&P 500 has actually posted positive returns.". While this of course is no guarantee, it shows that the writing isn't necessarily on the wall for further/significant market declines.
- Get clear on your spending. How can you shift your spending from things like emotional spending (that typically leaves you feeling worse later), and support things that are more meaningful and aligned with living a life with more purpose? Living a life with more intentionality and purpose alone can go a long way to reducing stress and fear.
- Make (or update) your financial plan. If we've not done this together recently, schedule time with me to pick that conversation back up. People often avoid making a plan out of fear, but after finally sitting down and doing one, I've seen them walk away with so much more clarity and feel more empowered and equipped with the answers to "What do I need to do?". We can't control the market, or the prices at the grocery store but every day, we can control the decisions that we make that can get us closer to our goals.
- Worried about rising costs? Check out my blog:10 Tips to beat inflation now. At home, and every day
- Time to buy? We all love an after-Christmas sale, but so many of us shy away from buying stocks when the stock market when it's down. News flash: prices in the equity market being down is the same. On-sale! While I cannot claim to predict when we will see the bottom, we know that equities (and bonds!) are quite a bit lower now than they were months ago so now is the time to consider what money you could invest, and if you need to change what is already invested. (Note: Emergency funds my friends are off limits, more on that in item #6)
- Cash is king, or so they say in the financial biz. Emergency funds are key to making stressful events feel less stressful. Dying air conditioners that need to be replaced, insurance deductibles that need to be met. Its emotionally hard enough to be in a fender bender, having the cash to easily hand over for the deductible goes a long way to making it that much easier.
- Dedicate at least 30 minutes a week to money work. Checking in on your spending, staying current with bills, shopping around for insurance, you name it but actively (or proactively) addressing these money things can really help when it comes to banishing fear and uncertainty and feel more clarity with your finances.
As always, if you run into any challenges, or have any questions as you run through this work, I'm here to be a resource and decision making partner. Don't hesitate to reach out.
*Forbes: How does the market performs during an economic recession. June 2, 2022