6 Ways to Feel Better About Your Financial Situation

When your bank account balance is looking dismal and you're digging through your pockets hoping for some forgotten cash, it's reasonable to be pessimistic about your financial situation. Don't despair. Instead, let's look at the piggy bank half-full, because there are plenty of positives in your financial situation that might be hard to see.

1. Count your blessings

While you may be on a tighter budget from time to time, you're not broke — not as long as you have clothes on your back, a roof over your head, and food in your belly, anyway. And if you still have a job? That's a blessing you can count each time a paycheck arrives.

It's not ideal to have no savings, nor an emergency fund, nor a well stocked retirement account. But when you take a step back, you might see that your situation is manageable, and changeable. Start with a tally of what you have in terms of time, money, skills, and social connections. (See also: How to Escape the Paycheck-to-Paycheck Cycle)

2. Come up with a plan

Not having enough money isn't fun, but if you let that problem fester for too long, it will wear you down. Your confidence and motivation will suffer as a result, and you run the significant risk of relegating yourself to being someone who's always struggling financially.

Focus on small ways you can change your financial situation immediately, such as selling stuff you no longer need, or looking for a side gig to bring in extra income. You don't even need a "second job" these days to bring in extra cash. You can pet sit in your neighborhood, rent out space in your home, drive for a ride-sharing service, plus dozens more moneymaking opportunities. I take on several of these tasks regularly, in addition to my job as a full-time journalist, because I like to have "enough" for the things I want. I live by the financial motto, 'If I'm not making money, I'm spending it' – which is why I have to spend more time doing the former than the latter to get ahead in life. (See also: 9 Ways to Earn Extra Cash When Money Is Tight)

3. Find a support group

Financial conversations can be extremely awkward, but it's important to seek out sources of support from people who understand what you're going through, and can provide advice. There's nothing wrong with setting boundaries when friends ask you to do something you can't afford. Politely say no and then lean on your supportive network. (See also: 15 Ways to Stay on Budget — Even With Your Spendy Friends)

4. Never feel guilty about saving money

Sometimes committing to living within your means, saving for an emergency fund, and reaching for financial independence means saying no to certain purchases and activities. It could mean letting your friends and family know that you won't be buying holiday gifts this year. Achieving your financial goals might require sacrifices here or there, but will be worth it when your purchases no longer come with a cost of credit card interest or future security.

5. Demolish that negative mindset

You know how when people start telling lies, they sometimes convince themselves that the lie they told is true? That's what happens when you're constantly saying you're broke. Eventually you'll begin to believe that, and being "broke" will become a way of life. Head that self-fulfilling prophecy off at the pass by removing that word from your lexicon altogether.

Change your narrative about your situation. Believe that you have the ability to rise above — and tell yourself so.

6. Look ahead, not behind

If you're in your current financial situation due to bad money decisions in the past (been there, done that), it's no use to beat yourself up about it. Recognize what you've done, decide that you're going to learn from it, and then move forward. Make each day another opportunity to improve and make better decisions. (See also: 20 Money Mistakes Everyone Makes But No One Talks About)

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6 Ways to Feel Better About Your Financial Situation


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