Part of Campus Recreation’s mission is to create a culture of wellness in the Student Recreation Center and our campus community. Over the next few months, we’ll be examining eight different wellness dimensions and giving you some tips on how to incorporate holistic wellness into your daily life. This week’s dimension is financial wellness.
What is financial wellness?
Financial wellness is the act of effectively managing your economic life while having financial security. You can achieve financial wellbeing through analyzing your spending habits, utilizing a savings account, and creating ambitious yet attainable goals. Money and financial security can be a source of stress for many adults, so learning how to manage it will be one less stressor affecting your overall wellbeing. Financial health can come in handy in so many situations, whether you are saving to buy a house or you want to know how much to spend on holiday gifts.
Managing financial wellness as a student:
Financial wellness isn’t necessarily about how much money you have; it’s about how you spend the money you do have. Most college students don’t have much extra spending money, and the hectic student lifestyle often makes students choose between what’s financially smart and what’s most convenient.
Creating a budget is one of the most critical aspects of financial wellness. Budgeting is knowing how much money you make, how much you spend on essentials like rent and Netflix, and how much you have leftover. Once you analyze your spending, you can start creating limits and setting savings goals to help strengthen your financial health even more. The Balance has a great Budgeting 101 article where they walk you through a step-by-step process for creating a budget and suggest some tools and apps that can help you stay on track.
Remember, you don’t have to never spend money to be financially healthy. Spending a little on a fancy coffee or takeout from your favorite restaurant can be worth it if it boosts your mood. Just make sure you’re mindful of your spending and planning for the future.
More tips for working on your financial wellness:
- Create a minimum balance for your checking and savings accounts, and set up alerts so you’ll know if you’re getting close to overdrawing your account.
- If you find you tend to overspend on daily items like food, try creating a cash budget. You’ll be able to physically see how much you’re spending.
- Check your bank account regularly – check your own transactions, and make sure there is no fraudulent activity.
- Create an ideal number that you want your savings account to get to, and formulate a savings plan to get there.
- Try not to borrow money that you wouldn’t be able to pay back in the near future. This goes for credit cards as well – if you know you won’t be able to pay back a purchase by the time your monthly payment is due, you might want to save the money first.
- Pay back loans and borrowed money as quickly as possible to avoid accumulating interest.
How can SOU help you improve your financial wellness?
- SAS/TRIO-SSS Services is a student support service that can help with financial aid wellness, financial literacy, planning, and more. Plus, their services are all free to SOU students!