There’s a popular saying about having “your mind on your money and your money on your mind.” As it turns out, most of us spend a lot of time thinking about money. Apart from fantasizing about what it would be like to win the lottery and finish our days in luxury, the majority of our money thoughts have to do with how to get by on what we make, ways to cut expenses/increase saving and other everyday financial issues.
Since thinking about money, and even being fearful about our financial situations are both so common, we put together this article to discuss how most people think about their finances and what their biggest money fears are.
One fourth of people in America spend time thinking about money more than any other aspect of life. As a matter of fact, people in the United States spend twice as much time thinking about finances as they do about their romantic lives. Second to money, work comes in as the topic that most people spend their time thinking about on a daily basis.
The Biggest Money Challenges Facing Americans
Just because we all spend a lot of time thinking about finances, that doesn’t mean that we get things right all the time with regards to our money. In fact, there are more than a few financial areas where people seem to consistently struggle. About 20 percent of people find that sticking with a budget is very challenging. Another 20 percent have struggles with saving for retirement. Nearly 15 percent of Americans struggle with paying for college, while another 13 percent find that saving for a home purchase is difficult. This should come as no surprise – 12 percent of people think that paying off credit card accounts is a challenge, while merely 8 percent of people have a hard time building an investment portfolio.
As is the case in all of life, the challenges that people struggle with the most are often results of the phase of life that a person and their family are in. For example, older people find retirement planning difficult, while younger generations may find paying for their educational loans to be a real chore.
In addition to money challenges changing depending upon the age of a person, the location a person lives in can also make things more difficult. In South Dakota, the biggest money worry is on saving up a decent amount in a savings account. In California, however, the challenge that seems to be the most frequent is paying for higher education costs and paying down student loans. At the same time, folks up in Alaska seem to put most of their financial focus on doing what they can to pay off their existing credit card debt.
Of course, the biggest fears that people have about money are almost always focused on not having enough. Constantly being in debt and living from one paycheck to the next are both very valid financial fears that combine to affect nearly 40 percent of the population.
Money concerns and fears are as old as money itself. While there is a vast difference between the types of things that more well off people worry about, when compared with the money woes of lower income households, it is a sure thing that no matter how much we have or how much we want, all of us will still spend lots of our waking hours thinking about money and trying to find ways to deal with our deepest financial fears.