Let’s talk about money
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One of the nastier problems modern couples have is how to deal with money. In fact this is one of the top causes of arguments and separations. So, let’s talk about money today.
Why do we have problems with money?
As with any problem, it starts with our thoughts. We have many chronic thoughts about money: it’s dirty, it’s a subject “good girls” don’t talk about, it’s evil and the list goes on. These beliefs generate in turn a sea of destructive emotions: fear, guilt, anxiety, to name a few.
More specifically in our minds money has gender and it is male. In fact, money has traditionally been associated with power and power with all that is male. Moreover power has a negative association with women. The first women who attempted to be queens in their own right were vilified as she wolves and even killed. Do you remember why Henry VIII had 6 wives? He couldn’t leave his inheritance to a woman. A woman couldn’t have power. If you think this is no longer true, think again. Wonder what are the reasons why the percentage of female CEOs is 4%? Why?
We all, men and women, don’t yet know how to handle a woman in power, a woman with money. This is particularly a serious problem when we talk about how to handle money in the intimacy of a couple. We, men and women, need to adapt to a powerful woman, a woman with money.
Letting go of the traditional couple is daunting. In fact, not everyone wants that. I learn of more and more modern couples where the woman, even if highly educated, chooses to perpetuate that role that the XIX century suffragist would detest.
Let’s assume, just for this blog, that we are talking about a dual career couple. I mean that both of you want career and intimacy. Let’s assume that both of you want to invent a brand new reality.
So, we have a woman with power and money. Who is she? Who is her partner? Do her money and power threaten him or support him?
The answers will depend on your thoughts, your beliefs. If you think that money is bad and that good girls cannot talk about it or earn more than their husband, you will end up resurrecting the previous relationship model: she is the damsel in distress and he is the knight in shiny armor.
We need to update our thinking patterns.
Question your assumptions
The first step to do so is good old fashioned awareness. We need to question our assumptions. Observe your behavior and ask why. Make it a habit.
You go out for a romantic dinner with your partner. Who should pay the bill? What would my ideal woman of power do? What would my ideal partner of this woman do?
You could raise your prices or get a raise, but you don’t negotiate it. Why? Which thought sabotaged you? What would my ideal woman of power do? What would my ideal partner of this woman do?
You and your partner don’t talk about money at all. Why? What are you afraid of? What would my ideal woman of power do? What would my ideal partner of this woman do?
Who do we want to become? Wouldn’t you like to be a full partner with your partner? Wouldn’t you like to grow together in all aspects of life, including how to manage the emotions of money and become both more powerful? Wouldn’t you like to learn to make money, save money, invest money, enjoy money and feel totally empowered on this subject?
How would a person who wants all that behave?
Reflect on your answers
It is time to be honest with yourself and your partner about your fears and hopes. Remember you are inventing a brand new model of intimacy. How do you want it to be? Do you want to keep secrets about it? Do you want to still be rescued or be the rescuer? Reflect on your answers and consider how you could act differently.
It is time to choose different thoughts and actions.
Don’t just make resolutions, take action.
If you are earning less than your partner, don’t blame the system and please don’t blame your partner. Remember how valuable you are. Improve your skill to communicate this value. Go to a negotiation class. Improve your negotiation skills.
More importantly, talk about money. If you are not talking about money at all, start talking about the possibility of talking about it. Just ask each other why not. Share honestly your fears.
You know, I was terrified to openly talk with my husband about money. My father used to say: “Not all the money, not all the love”. This meant that I should always have a reserve of money and love in case the relationship ended. Horrible! He educated me to live in scarcity of both money and love. He educated me to expect the end as a certainty. Once I remembered this fear, I could do something about it. Here you have my favorite method to transmute fear into fuel. Then I freed myself to talk about money.
To make this change a habit, imagine that you walk everyday hand in hand with your woman of power (if you are a woman) or with your ideal modern man (if you are a man). Ask him or her, what her/his opinion is? What advice could she/he give? Which innovative way is possible? As you walk with your BIG Self, you will become it. As you walk, as you learn, as you take courageous innovative action, your relationship will grow more intimate and your financial situation will too.
Do you want to do something magnificent with your one and precious life?
Now, I would love to hear from you.
I would love to hear your wisdom.
If you are not yet talking about money, what is stopping you? What will you do to be ready to speak up?
If you have conquered your fear of talking about money, how did you do it?
Please, share your wisdom directly in the comments below.
Add as much detail as possible in your reply. Remember, your voice may be of great help to someone else. Your voice might be the one thing that will finally touch the heart of that one person. Please do share your wisdom.
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Wishing you a very peaceful, powerful and loving 2017, elite!