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Women & Wealth: The Elephant in the Room
When I talk to groups about women and wealth, it’s difficult, if not impossible, to ignore the elephant in the room because consciously or unconsciously while we want to be good stewards of our money, our conditioning often keeps us from moving forward. However, if your goal is to achieve wealth or financial freedom so you can live your life the way you want without having to worry about money all of the time, you will need to address the elephant in the room – the one thing that can stop you dead in your tracks and shut down any dreams of ever achieving financial freedom before you even get started.
What am I talking about? The MONEY part, of course—specifically managing it. If the mere thought of managing your money conjures up all sorts of negative images—shame, blame, hate, fear, guilt, anxiety, stress, resentment, embarrassment, feeling stupid, or if you think of managing your money much like having a root canal—then that’s a problem.
You can’t expect to build wealth or achieve your goals (because most are money dependent) if you don’t have a healthy relationship with your money. That’s a problem. BUT it is fixable.
The basic process to rebuild or transform your relationship with money is to determine which thoughts, attitudes or behaviors are holding you back and then to create new, positive choices to replace them. It’s a simple process but it’s not always easy. In many cases, you will be challenging parts of your mindset that have been in place since childhood. In addition, change can be frightening, not just for you, but also for those close to you so, it can get messy, and at times even put you at odds with those you love the most. But it can be done; I’ve seen it happen many times, including in my own life.
I get along pretty well with money today, but it didn’t start out that way. I grew up in a family where money was only argued about, never talked about. And being an only child with a great imagination, I made up lots of stories about money in my head, most of which ultimately proved not to be true. As a result, I made lots of mistakes.
In the past, I wasn’t responsible for or with my money mostly because I didn’t know that I should be. I went through life mindlessly spending and rarely saving. Despite having an MBA in finance, I gladly turned the money management over to my husband (big mistake), and I paid a huge price for that one. While he knew the virtues of saving money (and we saved a lot), he knew nothing about managing it, so we lost most of it. After a divorce that left me virtually penniless, I realized it was up to me to take responsibility for my life and my money, so I switched careers to get the training and knowledge I needed to assume the role of my own personal money manager and I became a financial advisor. (Hey, if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.)
Today, I share a mix of the lessons I learned the hard way along with well-established financial planning strategies to manage and grow money with the hope of helping others have a smoother journey. As I look back, there were lots of warning signs all along the way, but I chose to ignore them. Truth is, though whether you choose to actively participate in a relationship with your money or not, life will go on, decisions will be made (consciously or unconsciously), but ultimately you will have to live with the consequences (the good and the bad).
If you’re ready to start your journey to financial freedom, let’s talk. I offer a complimentary strategy session – so take me up on it. Get answers to your burning questions and let’s discuss a personal strategy or path for you. Email me or visit my website at www.psworth.com and complete a meeting request form. Hope to see you soon.