Money and mental health struggles often come as a package. When finances are difficult, our mental health can take a hit, and vice versa: poor mental health can lead to difficulty managing money.

As millions of us continue to face challenges when it comes to money, it’s so important that we take steps to look after ourselves and prioritise mental wellbeing.

Here are five steps to take to help care for your mental health this month, or indeed, any month.


Talk it out

When it comes to our finances, we too often feel we must face the problem alone.

Many people feel too ashamed or embarrassed to seek help, but find that when they finally reach out, things start to change!

If you’re struggling with money, open up to someone you trust, or get free help from an organisation like Christians Against Poverty (CAP).

You can find out about all the services we offer at


Write it down

Our emotions can easily build up and become too much to bear. Putting your thoughts down on paper can help you process how you’re feeling and provide a healthy outlet for anger, frustration, grief and lots of other emotions.


Sweat it off

According to the NHS, physical exercise causes chemical changes in the brain that help to improve our mood.

However, you don’t need an expensive gym membership or pricey equipment to do this – walking, running and playing games in the park are all great ways to get a bit more active (and they’re free)!


Cook it up

The food we eat affects not only our physical health, but our mental wellbeing too.

Planning your meals before you head to the shop can help you choose healthier options and cut down on non-essential costs, bringing a little peace of mind.

Christians Against Poverty (CAP) provides local groups in communities like yours with lots more guidance on shopping and cooking healthily on a budget. Find out more at


Know it well

Whatever emotions you’re feeling, it’s important to know that they are valid and worth taking seriously.

You can honour this by taking the time to get to know your emotions better, learning about what causes you to feel a certain way and why.

This might include speaking to a trustworthy, confidential source such as Samaritans (call 116123) or SHOUT (text 85258), Lifeline 0808 808 8000, or asking your GP about counselling.


Jonathan Hayward is the manager of the West NI Debt Centre operated by the Enniskillen Presbyterian Church in partnership with Christians Against Poverty (CAP) which is a UK charity with over 580 services across the UK delivering free Debt Counselling, Life Skills and Money Management courses. ALL these services are freely available to everyone in Fermanagh and South Tyrone. Visit to find out more.