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What is financial PTSD?

Financial PTSD is related to worries over a lack of money and resources. PTSD is post-traumatic stress disorder, but is it a disorder or is it a natural reaction to a situation that a person experiences?

Financial PTSD

It is quite common and affects between 20-30% of the population. The term Financial PTSD was first introduced by Dr. Galen Buckwalter a research psychologist. When a person experiences overwhelming mental, emotional, and physical stress responses triggered by financial issues. The experience is commonly referred to as flight, fight, or freeze, so how do people overcome these overwhelming deep-seated stress responses?

Let’s first look at common symptoms.

Trauma can manifest with a small t or a large T. Symptoms can include a combination of anxiety, panic attacks, shame, low self-worth, sleep disturbances, isolation, sadness, depression, intrusive thoughts, overwhelm, procrastination, relationship issues, falling into addictions, angry outbursts, thinking in lack and a feeling of impending doom.

Some of the situations that people experience. 

  • Sudden, and/or major losses in financial security due to major life changes including divorce, separation, eviction, leaving an abusive relationship, job loss, and bankruptcy.
  • Fluctuations within the overall economy, such as inflation, the impact of high-interest rates on costs of mortgages, utility price rises, recessions, Government enforced lockdowns as in 2020 Covid 
  • Ongoing financial instability, current, past or short-term crises.
  • Poverty occurring between generations. 
  • Social and economic inequalities, gender pay gaps, ​​the difference between male and female earnings, and the female pension gap, where traditionally women do more low-paid and part-time work to fit in with family life.
  • Insufficient financial education and training, more so among working classes and of course women
  • Domestic abuse, emotional and psychological abuse, coercive control, and economic and financial abuses that leave women in vulnerable insecure financial positions.
  • Listen to the podcast episode three D’s in relationship endings Divorce, Death of a partner, Discard. the abrupt termination of the relationship.

Out of 195 countries in the world not one has achieved financial gender equality.
Only 10% of Fortune 500 CEOs are women.

Women globally earn around 37% less than men in similar roles

(Source: World Economic Forum)

Overcoming Financial PTSD

The main challenges in addressing the situation are, firstly, the need to make some practical changes in the life situation. Secondly, trauma can leave people feeling overwhelmed, hopeless, helpless, and paralyzed, so it is very difficult for a person to know what to do. Their decision-making processes are clouded, PTSD is characterized by being overwhelmed, which makes it hard to think clearly, focus, make a game plan, and follow through.

Healing could lie in therapy and shifting the mindset.

  • Trauma-informed therapy
  • Financial education and training
  • Meeting with a Financial advisor or Debt counsellor
  • Learning new skills to enhance self-esteem and career prospects
  • Connecting with a mindset coach/mentor
  • Talking with trusted friends & family

Taking back control and overcoming the challenges in your life when you have been hit by financial PTSD means taking steps to change yourself and your way of thinking.  Looking at the practical options you can implement to start regaining confidence and moving from a poverty mindset of loss and lack to gaining financial independence, security and prosperity.

If you are feeling any of the common symptoms above remember you are not alone. Although talking about money and money issues is considered taboo for many people the way forward is to start seeking help and connect with others who, chances are, have been there, are going through something similar, or may be able to help.

Success Stories

There are numerous stories of successful individuals and entrepreneurs who have experienced all sorts of financial traumas, there are even millionaires who can tell you how before they found financial success they were in debt or had lost everything they owned. 
Watch this video from a mentor Rob Moore with an interview with Steven Bartlett and how he really made his millions.

Here is a simple equation. 

When you can raise your VALUE in the market you can increase your income.
You need to get out of survivor mode to financial STABILITY and then work towards financial FREEDOM. Instead of working for money, you need to learn how to do these two things.

  1. Earn money while you sleep.
  2. Make money work for you.

If you would like courses and resources and ways to build confidence, transform, learn more, earn more, do more, and be more, to set yourself up for success then reach out to discover strategies to help yourself. 

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