Face your finances

Money is one of the top causes of stress today – and it’s well known that stress can trigger a cold sore. Here’s why being on top of your finances is good medicine.

Create a budget. Enter your income and expenses into a worksheet so all of your finances are in one place. You can create one on your own or use any number of pre-existing sources like the budget planner on ASIC’s MoneySmart. If your expenses are greater than your income, find ways to cut back.

Follow the 50/30/20 rule. This rule suggests allocating 50% of your monthly income toward your fixed expenses (rent, groceries, utilities, etc.), 30% toward lifestyle expenses (eating, entertainment, travelling, shopping) and (in a perfect world) 20% toward savings and/or reducing your debt. However, even finding ways that you can increase your savings a little will pay off in time.

Review your budget each month. Try your best to stick to it. Sometimes what’s worrying you are looming expenses related to special occasions, like weddings, holidays and anniversaries. Reviewing your budget every month can help you better plan for these bigger events and you’ll feel more in control as you get closer to your personal savings goals.