If you’re able to take out insurance against things going wrong, it makes sense to buy yourself some peace of mind and avoid situations that could cost you dearly. Insurance for your car, home, possessions, and pets; travel, public liability, life insurance and health insurance are all fairly standard things that we use to cover ourselves against unforeseen crises and the expense they can incur. It’s not quite the same for emotions, though. There aren’t too many brokers offering policies to cover you for stress, anxiety, anger, and misery, and that’s no surprise because emotions are difficult to quantify and hard to prove. So is there anything you can do to avoid the manifestation of one of life’s biggest problems, and effectively insure yourself against stress?
What insurance does for you
The chief benefit of having insurance is that it will cover you financially when things go wrong. If your dog is insured, you won’t have to face veterinary bills for thousands of dollars if they get hit by a car. If your life is insured, should you die suddenly your family will be taken care of and should be able to keep their home. It’s all about avoiding the stress of dealing with huge bills that you can’t afford. You’ll still have the worry and upset of the event itself to deal with, but at least you won’t have the additional burden of getting into debt. If insurance is a way of avoiding a major cause of stress, then it makes sense to apply the same logic to insuring yourself from the stresses of daily life.
Avoiding it is better than dealing with it
If you can prevent the causes of stress, that’s a much better approach than suffering the effects of stress and trying to cope with it and find a solution. If you check your insurance policies, there will always be an expectation that you will exercise reasonable care to avoid anything going wrong. You couldn’t, for example, expect a pay-out on your car insurance if you left the vehicle with the engine running on a busy street while you went shopping. You know you need to be mindful of minimizing any risk, so start by doing the same with your stress. There are many examples of ways in which you can avoid unnecessary stress by taking steps to prevent things going wrong:
- Keeping your home, your equipment and your car well-maintained will significantly reduce the chances of any major breakdowns. Have a schedule for regular maintenance checks on all critical systems, such as boilers and air conditioning units. Check your oil, water, antifreeze and tire pressures regularly and book your vehicles in for services at the recommended intervals.
- Nipping problems in the bud. As soon as you spot something that might cause trouble in the future, deal with it immediately. If your gutters get blocked, clean them out or get someone in to do it for you, don’t leave it until the whole gutter collapses and you get water coming into the attic. If the car starts making an odd noise, get it checked as soon as possible, or you may end up with a much bigger bill or find yourself stranded at the side of the road with the kids in the car one day.
- Get your finances in order. Having a savings account is your own form of insurance that you can use for any expenses that standard insurances won’t cover. There are many steps you can take to get control over your budget and identify ways to save money that you can use to sort out problems now or save for a rainy day.
- Protect your data. Most companies will have firewalls, proxy servers, back-ups and any other systems they need to prevent cyber attacks and keep their data safe. If you run your own business, or even if you just keep all your personal files, photos and records on your computer, you should be taking similar steps to prevent data loss and keep your system secure. Keep your anti-virus software up to date, make sure you have secure passwords that can’t be guessed or looked up, and always back-up your systems. You can use a hard drive back-up, a cloud service, or both to be extra secure. If you want to protect your business, there are specialist services available to help you with data recovery planning, and they will be able to advise on the best way to implement this plan for your business.
- Even if you have a great health insurance plan, it’s still best to avoid medical bills and the stress of sickness and injury. Looking after yourself is the best way to keep healthy, and you should be aware of the importance of a good diet, exercise, cutting out bad habits like smoking, and getting regular check-ups. If you take part in any sports, always wear protective equipment, and take simple safety measures like getting the stepladder out rather than balancing on a swivel chair, and avoiding anything potentially dangerous like poking a screwdriver into an electrical outlet. One of the other important influences on your health is stress, so by avoiding stresses in your everyday life, you’ll be doing your health a favor too.
- Planning and organization. If you lack organizational skills, you might find that you are always running late and therefore rushing about. This is not only adding to your stress, but you are more likely to have accidents, forget something important, or get a speeding ticket. It’s not possible to glide through life serenely taking everything in your stride; there will always be unexpected problems and delays throwing a spanner into the works. But by organizing yourself and your family and planning properly, you’ll be helping to bypass the things that can be avoided, leaving you better able to cope with the things that can’t.
Beat stress before it beats you by anticipating what may happen in your life and taking steps to prevent the causes of stress. Take control of your life by insuring yourself against stress, and you’ll be far more healthy and happy.