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How can Egyptians relieve the money stress from soaring prices?

In the wake of the current unprecedented wave of price increases, Egyptians are faced with budget shortfalls, especially due to salaries that haven’t been increased for the last few years which cause stress, over thinking and depression.

According to psychology experts, stress may worsen the situation, as your brain may not work efficiently if you are stressed and that could affect your health and wok production as well, therefore exacerbating the problem.  

Speaking to Egypt Independent Myrette El-Sokkari, a certified EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) practioner and economic expert, gives Egyptians a few tips to overcome soaring prices and money stress.
El-Sokkari is Egypt Representative for AAMET, which is the oldest EFT certification body in the world; she has a B.A. and M.A. in Economics, with a minor in Psychology from the American University in Cairo, Egypt.
For over 30 years, she worked as financial analyst and investment banker in Egypt’s leading commercial banks. She also served as Head of Research at the Egyptian Stock Exchange and as an international economic and financial specialist in both Egypt and Europe, consulting on economic and financial issues, ranging from agricultural, environmental, public sector financial policies, to financing of national parks.

1-Track your money

First, El-Sokkari said that people should track their money and start to watch their spending and know where their money goes, because they'll probably find that a lot of it is wasted.

Then, people should understand very well the difference between their needs and their wants; the needs are the commodities that people can't live without, while the wants are the entertaining products and services that people purchase because they want them, but they could actually survive without them.

"And to know the difference between the needs and the wants in their spending, people must value the things they purchase; they must ask themselves if they can give up these products and services and replace them with alternatives or not," El-Sokkari said.

"You can change your kids' school if you are paying too much money, that is beyond your budget; you can stop taking your daily coffee from the coffeeshop to save this money. And don't say this money will not affect your budget, because it will!" she said.   

After understanding their needs and wants, people should make their own new "budgeting" by dividing each and every penny earned in their salary on their needs; "they can do this by writing out their list of needs with a pen and paper; put the amount of money beside each item or use envelopes and place the allocated amount of money in a closed envelope labeled with the spending purpose," she said.

El-Sokkari advised people to give up on showing off by spending large amounts of money on unnecessary products and services only to claim 'aristocracy'.   

2- Relieve the stress

El-Sokkari said that those who are experiencing money challenges should relieve their stress on a daily basis through "Emotional Freedom Technique", also known as tapping, the person will focus on a specific issue while tapping on "end points of the body's energy meridians".

"Science proved that the parts of the brain involved in creative thinking stop working if there is too much stress, which disables people from thinking normally and confronting their daily life challenges," she explained.

El-Sokkari said that when you are stressed, your physical health can be affected and you'll end up paying even more money on medications which will further harm your budget.

Moreover, El-Sokkari pointed that talking to a friend or a psychiatrist about soating prices may sometimes exacerbate the issue, increasing the stress instead of solving the problem; but the tapping technique actually causes stress pattern interruption in the brain and through words that are used during the technique, the brain begins to produce stress-relief hormones, creativity flows again and the individual is be apple to resolve the problem and make better decisions.

3- Reconsider all your actions

El-Sokkari said Egyptians must take drastic measures to save their budget; "people should confront the issue of the soaring prices and stop complaining; they must stop taking endless loans and borrowing money with no real plan and find real solutions instead," she said.

El-Sokkari pointed out that people may sell some of their collectibles; for instance she suggested that a family may sell their car. "We need to think more practically and abandon our wants in order to survive," she said.

Finally, she suggested that people try to discover their hidden talents in order to make more money and stop being afraid of other people's judgment; "if you are a good cook, you may teach your friend cooking techniques with a small profit, while if she is good at crochet, she may create some products to sell; these profits may seem worthless but according to mathematical principles, when added up, the savings will duplicate." she said.


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