Yorkshire Building Society is encouraging people to use ‘Blue Monday’ as an incentive to get to grips with their finances.
Blue Monday is said to fall on the third Monday of January due to a combination of cold weather, the breaking of New Year resolutions and the cost of Christmas catching up with people.
The Society hopes today, Monday 21 January, will instead motivate people to review their financial situation and ensure they’re in control after MIND highlighted a link between money and mental health.
The charity, which provides advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem, says poor mental health can make managing finances harder, and worrying about money can makes someone’s mental health worse.
Yorkshire Building Society invites its customers, should they wish, to share health concerns with them to help its colleagues better respond to specific needs. Last year the building society saw an increase[i] in the number of its customers with anxiety, while depression and stress were also shown to be impacting customers’ lives.
Janis Hambling, head of the vulnerable customer support team at Yorkshire Building Society, said:
We understand that not everyone will feel comfortable discussing their mental health or other needs with us, but of those that do we are seeing an increase in customers with anxiety.
After what may have been an expensive couple of months, January is a good time to look at your finances, but there’s a Blue Monday worry that people may choose to ignore them.
Money worries can make people anxious so we want them to know they don’t have to suffer in silence and we’re here to help them manage their money during difficult times.
The Yorkshire encourages customers with mental health problems or who have concerns about their finances to have a confidential chat with colleagues in branches or over the phone.
Once we know more about a customer’s situation we can try and help them, taking steps together to address their finances and where necessary, putting them in touch with independent organisations such as the Money Advice Trust and The Samaritans, who can provide appropriate financial and mental health support.
Help managing your money during difficult times
Yorkshire Building Society offers the following tips to help people manage their money this Blue Monday:
[i] Year on year, 2017 to 2018, the Yorkshire Building Society saw a 2% increase in the percentage customers recording anxiety with the Society when experiencing mental health difficulties, and 1% rise in the percentage of customers with depression. The percentage relates to the specific types of mental health problems recorded by the Society’s vulnerable customer team, relating to customers registered as experiencing mental health difficulties.