H&R Block Partners with Clinical Psychologist Dr. Rachel Goldman on Reducing Financial Stress
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected the financial situations of many people, and many people may be feeling stressed in response to unexpected tax outcomes and confusion about filing extensions, struggling with their finances, and more. Financial stress is a top concern this time of year as people deal with the fallout of paying more in taxes owed than expected, receiving a smaller refund than they anticipated, dealing with increased expenses of summer childcare, and much more.
As part of Mental Health Awareness Month, H&R Block has partnered with Dr. Rachel Goldman, Ph.D., FTOS, a licensed psychologist and a clinical assistant professor at the New York University Grossman School of Medicine, to share her expertise on stress management as it relates to financial burden and asking for help when you need it.
Dr. Goldman consulted on H&R Block’s 2022 “Pulse on Help” study conducted by Wakefield Research among 1,000 U.S. adults. The study found that financial issues (46%) are the most common concern this year followed by physical health (38%), emotional or mental health (32%), and employment (28%).
“Stress happens. No one is immune to it. The key is to focus on what is in our control, and to learn ways to destress in the moment when we are feeling overwhelmed, or when things get to be too much,” said Goldman. “Finances are a known stressor and can impact one’s mental health, so if we know that, we need to take a moment to think about what is in our control, and perhaps what we can change. Seeking help is often an overlooked, but very valuable stress management tool.”
According to Money and Mental Health, almost four in ten people with a mental health diagnosis said their financial situation had worsened their mental health. And, just under half of people (46%) say the reverse, mental health itself has worsened their financial situation.
Dr. Goldman continues, “It’s all connected. The things that we do on most days impact our mental health, so it shouldn’t be surprising that money also impacts our mental health, but similarly, our mental health is impacted by money. The constant worry of ‘do I have enough money’, or ‘can I afford this’ can take the toll on someone and their mental health daily.”
However, there are things people can do now to lessen their financial stress next year when they file their taxes, which include:
- Keeping a pulse on finances and tax situation year-round. This could mean setting aside money each paycheck to pay for taxes in the future or making W2 adjustments to owe less at year-end. H&R Block’s Tax Calculator is also a great tool for estimating your options.
- Setting financial boundaries. Dr. Rachel champions the idea of setting goals and boundaries about how much will be saved and spent monthly.
- Ask for help when you need it. Whether it’s from experts at H&R Block or others, asking for help can take away significant stress.
These tips and tools may help with financial stress, but are not intended to be professional advice or treatment. Always seek the advice of a mental health professional with any questions you may have regarding mental health struggles and if you are in crisis, there are resources available, including, but not limited to:
- National Alliance on Mental Illness Helpline: 1 (800) 950-6264 or Text ‘NAMI’ to 741-741
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration National Helpline: 1 (800) 662-4357
- The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1 (800) 273-8255
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