Did you know that getting rid of your consumer debt can be quite good for your mental health, as well as your financial health?
Your brain may begin to function BETTER if you start ridding yourself of your burdensome debt.
Anyone who has undertaken the gargantuan task of paying off their own debt knows just how gratifying it is to see that get wiped away.
It feels good to work toward complete financial freedom, and it feels better to know that you don’t owe money to anyone.
New research has suggested that paying off your debt can improve the way your brain functions by unburdening both your wallet and your mind. Being in debt is stressful, while being debt-free is calming.
Imagine not having to scrape together payments every single month.
If you decide to go debt-free, and I highly suggest that you do, you’ll experience less worry, better sleep, and a larger zest for life. You’ll know what it’s like to work for yourself, and not the creditors.
These new findings come from researchers at the National University of Singapore’s Social Service Research Centre. The researchers who compiled the data studied almost 200 low-income people who unexpectedly had portions of their long-running mortgage, utility, and municipal debts paid down by a charity.
The participants were tested both before and after their debts were paid off on their ability to spot matches and mismatches. The recipients were also tested for generalized anxiety disorder and their ability to “make more beneficial financial decisions.”
The results of the study were astounding:
- Average error rates in the cognitive function tests fell to 4% after the debt was paid down, compared to a 17% error rate beforehand.
- The proportion of participants showing generalized anxiety disorders dropped from 78% to 53% after the debt relief.
- The number of people showing so-called “present bias,” which favors instant gratification, dropped to 33% from 44%, a sign that their impulse control had improved.
“Our study shows that because debt impairs psychological functioning and decision-making, it would be extremely challenging for even the motivated and talented to escape poverty,” said Dr. Ong Qiyan.
All this means that poverty is a mindset, much like wealth is.
Your personal views about money and the actions you take because of those views play a very large role in both how much wealth you will be able to obtain and how mentally healthy you are when making financial decisions.
When people live in “chronic scarcity” (meaning they lack sufficient money, housing, and food to thrive), their brains become overtaxed and stressed out because they’re constantly coping with emergency after emergency, research by the nonprofit consulting firm ideas42 found.
Freeing yourself by paying off your debt allows your mental state to return to a more serene place where better financial decisions are made. Paying off debt is rarely easy, but it’ll be worth it.
Make the choice to be financially free and mentally healthy today!