12 tips for staying well during the cost-of-living crisis

Two in five people living with bipolar in the UK say money worries have previously triggered a relapse. 

Are your finances stretched? Are you worrying about paying bills or buying food? Are you in problem debt? Worrying about money can increase your stress levels, which in turn can trigger bipolar symptoms. That’s why it’s so important to get on top of your finances.

Why not watch the recording of our Facebook Friday Live ‘Money Matters’ Q&A with experts from PayPlan?

And, if you’re feeling anxious about money, these 12 tips can help you reduce your stress levels and stay well…

Manage your bipolar well

1. Have a medication review if you need one – NICE Guidelines recommend you have a review at least once a year.

2. Track your mood with our free Mood Tracker app to spot and manage any early signs of a relapse.

3. Get friendly, free support from our peer support team.

4. Ask your doctor about therapy – NICE Guidelines state that psychological treatments are just as important as medication in the management of bipolar and say 16-20 sessions should be offered.

Manage your finances well

5. Talk about money – Research from the Money & Pensions Service shows that people who talk about money make better and less risky financial decisions and feel less stressed.

6. Organise your budget and banking with this helpful guide and this Budget Smart planner created specifically for people with bipolar from our partners at PayPlan.

7. Get advice to manage any debt from our partners at PayPlan who offer free, confidential, expert advice via a faster referral process for our bipolar community: email [email protected] or click here

8. Review your benefits Payplan's free online benefits calculator will help you find out what benefits you can claim.

9. Listen to a podcast – the team at Which? have put together a helpful podcast with the latest advice about managing your money, including outstanding debt, savings rates and mortgages.

10. Cut your electricity bill by switching off everything on ‘stand-by’ and turning down your thermostat by one degree. There are also various grants available to help with high energy prices - or find out if you qualify for the Warm Home Discount scheme

11. Spend less on food – Jamie Oliver posts free budget recipes for families on his website and this article includes some clever tips for reducing your shopping bill.

12. Save petrol – you’ll use fuel more efficiently if you accelerate gently, avoid unnecessary braking, ensure your tyres are inflated to the recommended level, drive between 45-50 mph whenever possible and remove an empty roof rack or box if you have one.

Last updated: 11 January 2024