Mental Health + Dinero Ft. Jorge Alvarez
We asked one of our favorite mental health creators and activist, Jorge Alvarez, to answer a few questions about dinero and mental health! Check out his insight!
How has your relationship with money affected your mental health?
Whew, this is a great question at a really great time. While I’m writing this, I am feeling an IMMENSE weight off my shoulders because I recently received a full-time offer after 7 months of searching for one. This is relevant because I’ve been experiencing what felt like perpetual anxiety from not having a job. Now, as a Social Impact Strategist and Creator, I was still generating significant income but since it’s a nontraditional path and one where income is not promised, stable, or secure– the thought of, “What if an opportunity doesn’t arise or that next check doesn’t hit?” kept playing in the back of my head. Scarcity and survival mindset is real. Now that I have a full-time job in addition to my freelance work, I feel like I can breathe again because stability and security is definitely something I am prioritizing at this point in my life. I can feel my anxiety level already decrease immensely. I’d also like to add that my mother’s relationship with money indirectly plays a part in my mental health because seeing her constantly stressed about bills only adds to this. I’m sure a lot of us can relate.
How have you been able to change it?
Yes, sort of. I have had to constantly talk myself out of the anxious spiraling thoughts when the scarcity and survival mindset was kicking in. I would feel a sense of panic but I had to remind myself that I am and have done a lot to ensure I am okay financially. Just because it feels uncomfortable doesn’t mean it’s dangerous. Unlearning money, low income, and first-gen trauma is a process and something I’m still navigating.
What are some helpful tips to cope with it?
I always point people to therapy… yes, even with the topic of money. I’ve been using therapy as a space to work through these anxious thoughts and irrational fears. My therapist is who has helped me reframe a lot of these thoughts and practice affirmations to validate what I am doing well versus what I fear. However, I recognize therapy isn’t for everyone and not everyone can access it so I definitely recommend trying to find someone in your life to talk to about this even if they just listen while working to develop coping mechanisms like meditation, affirmations, etc. for the anxious feelings that may arise. It’s seriously helped me.
Advice for people who are dealing with something similar
If you struggle with scarcity and a survival mindset, know that you are not alone and these feelings are valid. Also, know that these feelings are real. 9/10 times you have lived experiences that serve as evidence supporting these fears and anxieties. But, also know that you have more control at times than you recognize. Take time to lean on the community, search for local resources, and prioritize yourself.
Thank you Jorge for sharing your insight with the community!
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