Even in the best of times investment can be one of the most stressful jobs where you do not put another person’s health or safety in your hands. Instead you are handling livelihoods, yours, your client’s, or the livelihoods of everyone who works in a corporation or organization. It can be incredibly stressful even on a good day.
Good days have been few and far between these past few years. With the pandemic still going, new variants of the virus surging despite the distribution of vaccines, the economy is still in an uncertain place. The stress of living through, and dealing with the pandemic on a daily basis is compounded with the stresses of being an investor.
Stress can negatively affect both your health and your ability to make sound financial decisions. People who have dedicated their lives and careers to psychology have proven the negative effects of stress on your health. And while there may not be research specifically pertaining stress and financial decision making, there has been research proving the deep, deleterious effects of stress on sleep, physical health, and cognition. All things that can affect your ability to make sound decisions, especially financial ones.
With all of that in mind you should look into ways to reduce and manage the stress in your life. Both for your health and for your investments
Take Care of Yourself
Stress fuels and is often fueled in turn by the sense of not-being-in-control. This creates a spiral that takes you deeper into stress. Thus one of the key ways of managing stress is regaining control where you can. Starting with your body.
Make the time to exercise on a regular schedule. Eat more food that is good for you and less that isn’t. Not saying you have to cut out everything you enjoy (you also might find new foods to enjoy) but exert control over your diet. Find a hobby that you enjoy. Something that really takes your mind off things. Make sure you can separate your work time from recreation time.
Avoid Bad Coping Mechanisms
Just as there are good habits and practices you can get into there are also bad ones. Admittedly these can be more difficult to remunerate. Each individual is different and may have habits or poor coping mechanisms unique to them, or a combination unique to them. The most common ones are things like drinking and smoking, especially to excess. Drinking can severely hamper your thinking and judgment when it gets out of hand. Both can cause severe negative health problems and are highly addictive. Addiction stress only exacerbates.
Less substance related but also unhealthy are habits like overworking or reckless risk taking. The former just tires your body, even weakens it while also stressing you out. The latter can lead to really poor gambles with drastic consequences, with the stress of anticipation possibly surpassing the stress of a bad transaction.
You Are Not Alone
One of the best remedies against stress is something humans have known since the Ice Age. Each other. We are social beings, and staying connected with each other socially and emotionally goes a long way to enduring stress. This is especially the case during the pandemic which has forced people to distance themselves from each other for everyone’s sake. But there are ways to still connect with people, even if you might live alone. There are scores of digital platforms that allow voice-to-voice or even face-to-face communication.
Also, do not be afraid to seek out help. There are many psychologists, therapists, and counsellors out there ready to help you with your stress. They can provide safe places to work through what is stressing you out and teach you healthy coping methods.