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Don’t let your finances leave you feeling blue this Monday

21 January 2019

  • People are being encouraged to face any financial hangover they may have after the Christmas period and regain control of their money this New Year 
  • Yorkshire Building Society hopes people will use Blue Monday (21 January) to right, and not fight any financial worries
  • The Yorkshire offers tips for good financial health after MIND highlighted a link between mental health and money, and the Society noted an increase in customers with anxiety

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.

Janis added:

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:

  1. Understand your spending habits – if you don’t feel in control of your finances and are worrying about it, keep a spending diary to track your finances and look at what’s essential and where you can make cutbacks to reduce your outgoings. The Yorkshire has a budget calculator that could help you to review your money.
  2. Organise your finances – choose a regular time to review your finances and consider setting up a monthly budget, or withdrawing only the money you plan to spend in a given period to help avoid impulse purchases.
  3. Talk to someone you can trust –a problem shared is often a problem halved as the saying goes so speaking to someone you can trust, be it friends, family or colleagues, could be a big comfort.
  4. Speak to your bank or building society – whether you’re worried about something relating to your mortgage or your savings, speak to your provider to discuss any concerns. You might find it useful to prepare for meeting with them by writing down your worries and having relevant paperwork to hand.
  5. Seek professional help – there are organisations on hand to help if you’re struggling to make ends meet or worried about your money situation.  Money Advice Trust or Citizens Advice Bureau can offer guidance on money issues, whilst MIND or the Samaritans provide support to people experiencing poor mental health.
Anyone experiencing mental health problems should seek advice from either their GP or contact the Samaritans on 116 123 or at www.samaritans.org


[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.

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