The cost-of-living crisis has led much of the UK to keep a close eye on their finances, with households earning as much as 40K effected.

Here, Sam Covington at Financial brand Finbri reveals the 5 signs you have a toxic relationship along with money with practical ways to remedy them.

‘Its not a debt, its cashflow’

Traditionally, the term debt was used to describe borrowing through the likes of credit cards or loans. Now, there are more ways to borrow than ever before, whether it be Klarna, an overdraft or Clear pay. Often, these are presented as ‘no brainer’ ways of purchasing as they boast little to no interest along with branding that replicates that of retailers that target millennials.

‘There are so many new ways of borrowing, it can redefine our definition of debt’, says Covington. ‘It’s important not to get swept up in easy ‘pay back’ schemes that encourage ‘little and often’ payments with the idea that you won’t notice the repayments. Debt is debt, and if you miss payments then it will impact your credit score. Likewise, borrowers regard an overdraft as debt, and they often hold high interest rates that continue even if your salary is going into your account each month, clearing a portion of it’.

‘Skewing the definitions of borrowing to either ease your feelings of debt or encourage additional spending indicates that your relationship with money needs work. If you are tempted to use the likes of Klarna, identify whether the wanted item is a ‘want to have’, or ‘need to have’. Something that’s a ‘nice to have’ shouldn’t be paid with credit’.

Money on my mind: I spent X, they spent Y & next time I’ll spend Z.

Toxic relationships with money are typically associated with big or frequent spenders. However, this is not always the case. Over analysing what you spend each month, along with the habits of those around you, could be a sign that you are fearful of spending. Working to regulate your spending will gradually reduce your spending fears. It’s great to regularly keep track of your spending but it’s vital that there is no fear surrounding outgoings.

My Financial worth is my personal worth.

It’s inevitable that those within a friendship group will receive varying incomes. It’s easy to compare yourself to others, especially if you suspect that they are receiving a much higher salary than yourself. It’s vital that your self-worth isn’t synonymous with your financial worth. Making it so is a sure-fire way to lower self-esteem and resent the finances of other as well as your own.

Bank Balance? I don’t know her. 

4% of the UK admit to never checking their bank balance. ‘If you rarely or never check your bank balance, it’s important that this changes. Often, those that don’t check their balance feel anxiety around their balance. However, checking your balance and statements will not only improve money management, but potentially save money. Often people are hold subscriptions that they are unaware of and even direct debits. Cancelling unwanted subscriptions, a policies may save you 100s over the course of the year.’

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