From Financial Planning To Meditation: Take Control Of Your Life With These Problem Solving Skills For Any Age Life skills for all


Life can be fulfilled when, without warning, a big decision needs to be made. You have to land your first job, choose which university to apply to or move to and suddenly you need strategies to help you. It’s tempting to hope your problems magically go away, but therapists and financial experts have a number of techniques to help you get through these times. As a result, you might even feel stronger and happier.

However, you need to deal with your worries first. “When we are faced with problems, the emotional side of our brain can distract the rational side and cause us to panic,” says Simonne Gnessen, financial life planner and founder of Wise Monkey Financial Coaching. “It’s a natural reaction, so let go of those feelings. Write your concerns in a journal, go for a run, and then once you release those emotions you’ll have a chance to be logical.

Mindfulness instructor and mental health activist Katya Jezzard-Puyraud uses what she calls the “plughole technique” as a way to let go of stress, “whenever I find emotions in my head.” Just stay still for a moment, tilt your head, close your eyes, and breathe deeply. Imagine that your negative emotions slowly drift from your head down your body to your feet. Next, visualize removing a plug from each of the soles of your feet, allowing emotions to drain harmlessly. Finally, take a big step away from this place. “It’s an effective way to mentally let go of unnecessary emotions,” she says.

Once you’ve dealt with the emotion, it’s time to get rational about finding out the reality of your situation, whether it’s calling in the experts or looking at your finances.

Taking charge of your finances is an important step towards taking charge of your life. You can find tools and tips on how to do this on the Barclays LifeSkills site, which hosts a suite of resources designed to help people develop the financial and work skills they need to move forward in life. He emphasizes: “When economic or financial shocks strike, understanding what happens to your personal finances and why will help you be in a better position to do something. He recommends setting up and sticking to a personal budget, researching better deals on household bills, keeping a close eye on your credit score, and having a good understanding of your payslip so you can familiarize yourself with your real one. financial situation.

After you’ve completed this basic, hands-on work, it’s time to get a bigger perspective on events. “Sometimes a client imagines me he’s in a helicopter, so he’s very high up and looking down at his life,” says Gnessen. “At this distance, they often describe being trapped in a maze or running like a headless chicken. Then we look for ways to escape the labyrinth or panic. It’s hard to find a way out when you’re in the middle of a stressful situation, but taking a different perspective can help you see things more clearly.

Barclays LifeSkills has many resources that can help you gain mental clarity, for example, in accepting negative emotions in order to learn from them so that you can overcome setbacks in the future.

Giving yourself room to breathe can free your brain to find creative ways out of your predicament. “Stop worrying about the things you can’t control and take action where you can,” says Gnessen. For example, Barclays LifeSkills recommends listing all of your bills and determining which ones should be prioritized and whether any of them can be canceled or reduced. Seeing all of your expenses in one place like this means you get a truly holistic view of your financial situation.

Life skills

If destructive doubt sets in, Jezzard-Puyraud is ruthless in shutting it down. “If I’m mentally fighting something stupid that I’ve done, I stop for a moment, take a really deep breath, and say out loud with the negative voice in my head, ‘Stop bullying me!’ It’s a technique for pulling yourself away from the negative and mean side of yourself. She also advocates appeasing negative thoughts with a Calming Autogenic Phrase Meditation, which induces a state of emotional relaxation and calm by repeating certain words such as, “My body is relaxed, my mind is calm, I feel serene,” I am comfortable. “She recommends one created by her mindfulness organization, LightHearts UK, which can be found on YouTube.

The good news is that all of this work, both practical and emotional, can lead you to a more powerful and hopeful place in life. “Sometimes an unwanted change can bring positive things,” says Gnessen. “A major change can often be the boost you need. You may have denied your situation, but when you have to face it, you can learn new and better habits. Learning to manage your money is empowering and can allow you to live your life on your own terms.

To learn more about how to improve your mental wellness, visit


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