financial stress and your mental wellbeing


Even in healthy economic times, life can be expensive. There’s food to put on the table, bills to pay and gifts to buy. And that’s not even half of it.

Due to higher living expenses, rising interest rates and the impacts of inflation, many people are feeling some level of financial pressure right now. And increased financial pressure can cause stress or anxiety — leading to impacts on physical and mental health.


What is financial wellbeing?

According to a 2017 study* by life, health and wellbeing insurer — AIA Australia^, there is a strong connection between physical, mental and financial wellbeing.

People are in a state of financial wellbeing when:

  • they can meet expenses and have some money left over
  • they feel in control of their finances, and
  • they feel financially secure, now and in the future.


* SuperRatings 10 Year Platinum Performance 2014-2024 (MySuper)

How financial wellbeing is connected to overall health 

Research from Heartward Strategic, in collaboration with Beyond Blue and the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC), also shows that people experiencing financial challenges are at least twice as likely to encounter mental health issues than those who aren’t, and vice versa.**

So, improving your financial wellbeing could have a positive impact on your physical and mental wellbeing.


Ways to improve your financial wellbeing

  1. Recognise financial ‘red flags’
    These may include getting behind on your mortgage repayments and paying bills late or not paying them.

  2. Become financially educated
    There are many free websites providing financial education to help empower you to make more informed financial decisions and to live within your means. Have a look at the government’s MoneySmart website as a first step.

  3. Plan and budget 
    A clear budget and financial plan can help you restructure spending, manage debt, and change spending habits. Check how much you’re spending and work out where your money is going with ASIC's MoneySmart Budget Planner.

  4. Get sound advice 
    Getting some professional money advice tailored to your situation can help lay the foundation for a more secure financial future. 


Need some help now? 

HESTA is proud to partner with Infoxchange, the not-for-profit behind 'Ask Izzy' — a service that helps people access support services in their local area across Australia±. It is completely free and anonymous, with thousands of services listed to cater to your specific needs. From housing to health, finances and more, find out more about Ask Izzy.



*Source: Exploring financial wellbeing in the Australian context (2017), AIA Australia.

** Heartward Strategic Money and Mental Health Social Research Report, August 2022, page 5 (research findings).

± Ask Izzy is owned and operated by Infoxchange ABN 74 457 506 140. Third-party services are provided by parties other than H.E.S.T. Australia Ltd and under the terms and conditions of those parties. H.E.S.T. Australia Ltd does not recommend, endorse or accept any responsibility for the products and services offered by third parties or any liability for loss or damage incurred as a result of services provided by third parties. You should exercise your own judgment about the products and services being offered.

Insurance is available to all eligible HESTA members through AIA Australia Ltd ABN 79 004 837 861 AFSL 230043. For more information please visit:



you might also like

Meet Julianna

Julianna contacted HESTA for advice about getting the most out of her super in retirement. Now she's getting a regular income from her HESTA Income Stream account.

Read More

Meet Sam

HESTA member Sam can see the impact extra contributions are having on her super balance. Read her story.

Read More

Super with impact

Ready to join a top-performing super fund* that's working for real-world impact?


* SuperRatings 10 Year Platinum Performance 2014-2024 (MySuper)