Coping with Financial Stress
There are a lot of moving parts when it comes to personal finance, which can be incredibly stressful. Then when you add in the extraordinary financial challenges for music makers and music professionals in Canada, the potential stress only compounds. But there are strategies that you can use to help handle financial stress so that you can focus on moving your finances forward.
Prioritize your Mental Health
It’s important to keep yourself financially healthy, but don’t throw yourself into your finances at the expense of your mental health. If you are feeling the toll of financial stress, it’s a sign that you need to focus on managing your stress before engaging with the situation. In these moments, engage in your go-to de-stressing activities to calm and clear your mind. Mediation, deep breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, and dozens of other relaxation techniques are easy to learn and perform every day, and they can do wonders for melting away stress.
Breaking big financial problems down into small, simple tasks can help you get past initial stress and anxiety to move forward. For example, if you’re out of work and need to apply for unemployment, start by locating the application, reading about the documentation you’ll need, starting to collect those, and so on.
You may be feeling anxious and think that a budget is only going to add to your financial stress, but it is the best tool you have to get control of your finances. A budget allows you to stay within your means and helps you cover your immediate expenses, while still working toward your savings goals. The more control you have, the less stress you will feel.
Building an emergency fund may seem tough at first, especially if you are struggling to make ends meet each month. The easiest way to build your emergency savings is to make saving money a part of your budget. Start by putting aside a small amount, whether it's $10 or $100 each month, so you can build up your emergency fund.
Lean on your community
The Unison office has compiled a list of helpful resources for Canadian music-makers and music professionals to help navigate mentally and physically at this time so, let's work on getting through, together.We'll be regularly updating this list of resources as much as possible to keep you informed of what's available for our Canadian industry during these times.
- COVID-19 Employment Resources List
- COVID-19 Financial Assistance Resource List
- COVID-19 Resources for the Music Industry
Ask for Professional Help
If you feel that the stress of your financial situation is too much for you to handle, know that Unison is here for you. The Unison Benevolent Fund provides a wide range of free and confidential counselling services for registered Canadian music-makers and their immediate family in need of help. Call 1-855-9UNISON to access our resources and support available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.