Dealing with stress, anxiety and other mental challenges is one thing. Doing it while under financial stress is a whole other ballgame! And that is the unfortunate position many women in the Arab world find themselves in.
In societies that uphold a women’s place in family and the home, women find themselves dependent on their spouse for financial support. That’s well and good until their marital status changes, or a tragic event befalls the breadwinner. A housewife finds herself under a mountain of emotional stress compounded by a financial burden. And even if that doesn’t happen; all an Arab housewife needs to do is look around at the 50%+ divorce rates across the Arab world. That alone warrants a lifetime prescription of Prozac, or, a plan to be financially sustainable.
Here are ten tips for financial sustainability that will have a direct impact on your mental well-being
- Discuss financial matters with your spouse, parent or guardian and address worse case scenarios
- Consult a financial adviser on a financial plan based on your current reality
- Put in place a savings plan and stick to it
- Educate yourself on financial sustainability using sites like Cashy.me and fool.com
- If you have the disposable income, join a women’s angel investment network to learn from others and co-invest to mitigate your risk
- Consider starting a home business, or taking on part-time work
- Learn the basics of balancing your accounts. Take an accounting course
- Educate yourself on the laws of the land regarding inheritance or divorce
- Acknowledge the challenges of financial stress and discuss them with a mental health professional, a support group or a trusted friend
- No matter how difficult your current financial circumstances are, you can always improve on them. Reach out for support
If you have advice to offer others, please join the conversation and share your experience.