What Is Financial Wellness? - Deepstash
Financial Well-Being

Financial security is the perception that you have enough money, so you don't routinely worry about it.

Financial well-being enables people to enjoy everyday pleasures of life: seeing your children do well, having friendships, good relationships, being able to go places, etc.

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The federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) defines financial wellbeing as:

  • having control over day-to-day finances
  • being able to absorb a financial shock
  • being on track toward financial goals
  • having the freedom to make choices that help you enjoy life

As a continuum that is not strictly aligned with income level, financial wellbeing ranges from severe financial stress to being highly satisfied with one's financial situation. Through education, opportunity, and support, people can move along the continuum to greater financial wellbeing.

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According to a 2018 survey, the vast majority of respondents defined financial well-being in terms of freedom.

  • 21 percent said it meant freedom from financial stress.
  • 21 percent point to freedom from worry about unexpected expenses.
  • 21 percent cited freedom from debt.
  • 18 percent said it meant freedom to make choices.

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Financial experts often use general benchmarks to set standards for financial wellness, such as an emergency savings fund covering three to six months of expenses, or the amount needed for retirement.

But if you are feeling financial stress, these targets can feel intimidating. Overly ambitious goals can make you feel scared and anxious and may affect your physical and emotional health.

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You don't have to be wealthy to achieve financial well-being. Research shows that beyond a modest point, more money has a limited effect on happiness.

  • Once our basic needs are met, we can quickly get used to increased wealth. Our financial status may even feel ordinary or inadequate.
  • Building financial resilience is helpful, such as building emergency savings, dealing with student debt, and finding reasonable mortgages and car loans.
  • Setting personal goals can help you progress toward financial well-being. It won't transform your financial life overnight, but committing to healthy changes may make you feel better.

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