Three-quarters of people generally worry about their cash flow, but four in 10 admit to spending more time fretting than taking action, a survey from Treasury-backed NS&I said.
Of those who are worried about their budgets, a larger proportion of men than women said they spend more time worrying than planning, at 45% compared with 37% of women.
Researchers also found that people who plan their finances save almost double the amount each month of those who spend their time just getting stressed.
Those who spend more time worrying than doing something about it typically put £53.47 aside each month, while those who plan save an average of £104.39.
This equates to around £600 more each year being set aside by those who plan, enough to cover a standard rate gas and electricity bill for around six months.