Covid-19 and our money: fighting a psychological battle

Across the world, governments and populations face the same challenges, namely how to treat coronavirus and prevent its spread.

But this is only the beginning. Certainly, in the here and now, in the immediate future, the priority is to control the virus, and we salute the legions of scientists, medical personnel, and key workers who are making this happen every day. But what comes next? How do we deal with the economic depression that follows such a crisis? How do we avoid the global recession?

There is one thing we must do: we must not yield. We should not turn around and simply accept the worst case scenario as inevitable.

And we will not. This is not the way we as a species do things. If the last few months have taught us anything, it is that the incredible resistance of humanity is still alive and well. Even in the face of such difficulties, the flame of effort, compassion, positivity still burns brightly.

This is all very well, but what does this mean in practice? How do we channel this resilience into a set of practical solutions that will take us and our finances forward?

Let’s take a look at this in a little more detail.

Practical solutions to win the psychological battle

We often hear the phrase “it’s all in your head,” as if a psychological problem is somehow less valid than a physical or external problem. In the 21st century, we are stepping back against this, not only recognizing that psychological issues need real consideration, but also understanding that there are real steps we can take to overcome them.

So if you’ve been plagued by worries and anxiety about money as a result of this crisis, how do you nullify negativity?

Develop a complete understanding of your situation.

Much of the anxiety and worry we feel on a daily basis comes from uncertainty and lack of knowledge. Basically, if we don’t know what we are dealing with, we assume the worst. And, these negative feelings increase and increase until we are overwhelmed.

Fight this trend. Fight with knowledge. Sit back and find out how the virus has affected your income. Then determine what adjustments can be made so that you can not only keep moving forward, but also actively prepare for a prosperous future.

This is not a one-time exercise. You need to get used to assessing your situation on a regular basis, running accounts, assessing damage and improvement, and arming yourself with the knowledge you need to gain advantage.

Start diversifying

Don’t put all your eggs, as the old adage says, in one basket. There is a reason why this has become so cliche, because it is great advice. If your income stream is too narrow or too restricted, you are putting yourself in danger. Even when the times are good, you are only a leap, a step, and a leap from a serious financial problem.

So what is the answer? Diversity. Don’t turn your back on your current income streams and business interests. Instead, look to add to them. Think about how you can protect yourself with a more diverse investment portfolio, and then consider how this diversity can really drive your success.

Build a positive attitude.

Negativity will get us nowhere. Instead, it erodes our psychology and makes it difficult to gain perspective and understanding of our situation. Our minds are clouded by doubt and other similar thoughts.

But, by making small positive changes in our mindset, we can counter this. Make these small incremental changes: reformulating setbacks as challenges and opportunities, for example, or placing certain minor difficulties in a larger context. Get used to doing this and witness big changes in your psychology.

Be proactive

Change cannot happen on its own. Your goals and objectives will not be achieved without effort and action. However, this does not mean confusing movement with progress and running like a headless chicken. Rather, it means outlining what you want to achieve in the short and long term, thinking about what you need to do to achieve this, and then putting one foot in front of the other until you get there.

The coronavirus has made goal achievement a little more challenging than usual, so you may need to change your focus. But don’t be discouraged.

Seek assistance

Help is available, so be sure to get the help you need. This can come from talking to friends and coworkers, or from participating in webinars, video media, or interesting articles. The truth is, there is no one “right” way to educate ourselves and increase our emotional and psychological resilience.

We are all in this together, so let’s help each other. Let us accept the help that we ourselves need to win the psychological battle and overcome this crisis stronger than ever.

Det David Love is a consultant to Money Mastery International, a financial education consortium. MMI offers live workshops and seminars designed to help people become financially independent. Instructors are professionals and entrepreneurs who take a holistic approach to financial education by exploring the psychology of money, the practical principles of money management, and proven methods of wealth creation.

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