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ADVICE FOR THIS STRESSFUL TIME from Dawn Starks in Simple Money

No debate, these are stressful times.  While this pandemic continues to unfold, here are some suggestions I compiled for the clients of my planning firm for how to cope with the stress that all of us are feeling.

I have divided it into three sections: advice for all, advice for those already retired or close to retirement, and those still in their working years.

Advice for All

  • Don’t panic. While it feels like this is uncharted territory (and the media hypes the situation that way), it is not.  We’ve had major economic and health crises before in this country and in the world, and this too shall pass.
  • Change your focus. Discipline yourself to remove or at least reduce your focus on the market.  Don’t obsessively watch your investment accounts: it is better to forget about them for now and spend your time elsewhere.
  • Limit your exposure to media. Stay up to date on the news but limit your exposure to it as much as possible.  There is nothing to be gained from hours and hours of media exposure other than a whole bunch of anxiety and stress.
  • Stay healthy. Focus on staying healthy.  We have clearly gotten the message about hand washing and social distancing.  But don’t forget to get enough sleep, eat well, and get some exercise.  The easy trap is to sit on your behind all day and watch the drama unfold, eating unhealthy foods.  Instead, use this time to focus your efforts on getting more sleep and maintaining a healthy diet.  Don’t forget that exercise helps reduce your stress!
  • Breathe.  Just now writing the above, I caught myself breathing shallowly and feeling anxious.  See, I’m not immune to stress!  Stop a few times each day, close your eyes, and take some deep breaths.  (Just not within six feet of anyone else, ha ha!)
  • Keep yourself occupied. If you find yourself with more time on your hands due to self-isolation, find some meaningful things with which to occupy yourself.  Read, take an online class, communicate with friends and loved ones, finish those house projects you’ve been avoiding, plant a garden, take a walk, love on your pets.  The list of things you can do besides sit around and freak out about COVID-19 and the stock market is endless.
  • Be grateful. If today you have good health and people you love and who love you, count yourself lucky.
  • Don’t be greedy. For some, this market downturn might feel like a golden opportunity to buy into stocks “on sale.”  Resist the urge to invest your emergency cash.  Short-term savings should not be invested in stocks.  The market may very well go down more before it recovers, and in the meantime, you might need that cash.
  • CLICK TO CONTINUE

Photo Credit: Frank McKenna in Unsplash 

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SheVille Team

We are a one-of-a-kind magazine that provides local, regional, national and international information about women’s lives and education, performing and visual arts and writing, the environment, green living and sustainability and regional Western North Carolina business, people and events. “Villages preserve culture: dress, food and dance are a few examples. As villages grow in population and turn into towns, local cafes make way for large American chains. Handmade leather sandals are discarded for a pair of Western sneakers. Due to its small size, a village fosters a tight-knit sense of community. Justpeace.org explains the meaning of the African proverb, “It takes a village,” by stating that a sense of community is critical to maintaining a healthy society. Village members hold a wealth of information regarding their heritage: they know about the ancient traditions, methods of production and the resources of the land. When villages become dispersed or exterminated in times of war, this anthropological knowledge disappears. Large cities are not as conducive to growing and producing foods such as fruits and vegetables. Villages, on the other hand, usually have ample amounts of land and other resources necessary for growing conditions.” The Importance of Villages by Catherine Capozzi Our Mission SheVille.org provides readers with information important to women’s lives and well-being. We focus primarily on the areas of education & health, business & finance, the arts & the environment. We are particularly interested in local & regional resources, organizations & events.

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