Beyond Finance, one of the nation’s most prominent debt resolution companies, partnered with OnePoll and SWNS to deliver a national Mental Health Awareness Month survey. The numbers in this Beyond Finance survey were staggering and found that acute financial stress takes on many forms in people’s lives, all of which tend to cause harm in the lives of those struggling with personal debt.
For example, the 2,000 adults polled showed that 66% had avoided social events because of shame or embarrassment about their financial situation. Those “fear of missing out (FOMO)” moments include birthday parties (33%), weddings (32%), happy hours (31%), networking events (31%), dates (30%), and even church (27%).
Dr. Erika Rasure, former professor of business and financial services at Maryville University and financial therapist for Beyond Finance clients, believes those missed events and the symptoms causing those feelings all funnel into self-worth.
“Whether those individuals polled focus on what they earn or their comfort level discussing their financial stresses, these numbers shine a light on one primary thing–these days, personal finances directly impact on the view of one’s worth,” she said.
“These numbers shine a crucial light on how personal finances directly impact the view of one’s worth.”Dr. Erika Rasure, Beyond Finance client financial therapist
The rising costs of living may be one of the leading factors building financial stress in the lives of Americans. In 2022, the average U.S. household income is $74,099. Nonetheless, the survey pointed out people believe they need to earn a minimum of $86,000 to never feel stressed about their finances again.
That number may be why eight in 10 people (80%) of those reported have some form of debt. While the problem is singular, the symptoms can vary:
- 42% shared debt has negatively affected their self-esteem
- 38% noted the effects on their work productivity
- 38% also reported debt harmed their physical health
“Clients of Beyond Finance have mentioned that it is difficult to have tough conversations about money with partners. Problems fester until they feel out of control,” said Beyond Finance Senior Vice President of Clients Tom Blank. “One of the services we provide are tools for having these conversations so that they can be productive instead of argumentative.”
Although no Beyond Finance clients were a part of the National Mental Health Awareness Month survey, both Blank and Dr. Rasure believe the company’s client’s feelings would not stray from the survey numbers. Here are a few more metrics that provide a glance into the current financial stress levels of people today:
- 67% engage in “stress shopping” when feeling financially overwhelmed
- 58% feel alone when experiencing financial stress
- 51% are ashamed of their struggles to pay bills or manage their finances
- 35% blame themselves for their current economic situation
- 35% believe they are not doing enough to change it or avoid looking at their bills
“Symptoms of acute financial stress, such as finance-related avoidant behaviors, feelings of isolation, and guilt can affect anyone, regardless of how much money they earn,” Rasure added. “There are options available to help diminish or refinance debt and give people greater peace of mind. It’s time to applaud people for being proactive in dealing with their debt.”
Dr. Rasure is a paid financial therapist for Beyond Finance’s clients, whose opinions are hers. The Beyond Finance survey was a random, double-opt-in outreach conducted by OnePoll following the Market Research Society’s code of conduct. Representatives collected data between April 25-26, 2022.
All participants were paid an amount depending on the length and complexity of the survey. This survey was overseen and edited by the OnePoll research team, who are MRS members and have corporate membership to ESOMAR (the European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research) and AAPOR (the American Association for Public Opinion Research).
About Beyond Finance, LLC
Beyond Finance, LLC is one of the nation’s largest and most influential debt resolution organizations in Houston, Texas. By standing alongside clients wherever they are in their debt journey, Beyond Finance uses personalized debt reduction programs and proprietary technology to give them the clarity, confidence, and tools they need to move beyond debt. Since 2011, they have resolved more than $1 billion in client debt. In June 2020, it merged with an affiliate to become the dedicated company it is today. They have additional offices in Chicago, Illinois, San Diego, and Irvine, California. For more information, visit BeyondFinance.com.