Continuing the Her Finances series, let's get personal and talk about your relationship with money. Do you feel stressed when you think about your finances? You are not alone. Concerns about bills and expenses emerge as a top source of stress among most groups of women (Source: National Survey). It is crucial to develop a healthy and positive relationship with money to attract more of it.
In this blog post, I will share some insights on creating a healthy relationship with your money. Starting with my relationship with money and then five ways you can develop a healthy relationship with money.
What is your relationship with money?
What are the first three words that come to your mind when you think about money? Write them down.
The three words I think about with regards to money are Opportunity, Multiplying, and Gratitude.
What type of relationship should we have with money?
At a financial workshop I attended recently, women shared the words they associated with money. Most of the words shared were slightly negative. It proved the case that most women have a negative relationship with money.
To create, grow, and keep wealth, you need to have a healthy relationship with it and an action plan (Source: Is Your Relationship with Money Healthy?). I am on a mission to help women like me have a more positive relationship with money. Remember the three words you associate with money; we want them to be positive.
My relationship with money
Let me begin by sharing my relationship with money using some reflective points:
My earliest memories
In Nigeria, it was customary to give money as gifts to children during holidays and birthday celebrations. I remember when family members gave me money, I thought I could buy everything I needed. I enjoyed looking at my money and planning what I could buy with the money I got.
Making my own money
To grow my "pocket money" at age thirteen, I started my first small business where I sold a homemade Nigerian beverage - Zobo. I learned the art of growing your money from the women in my life. Being resourceful and creating financial opportunities was promoted in my extended family.
Learning do's and don'ts
I learned a lot of lessons about money by observing people around me. It has always been important to me not to repeat the mistakes I saw. I wanted to be financially independent, have enough and be able to share my money. Though the financial behaviors I observed growing up informed my money journey, I am redefining my relationship with money.
From not having enough to sufficient
Growing up, we did not have free access to everything we needed. My relationship with money progressed from the fear of not having enough to being comfortable in having what I needed. Overcoming my fear of being broke has been an essential step for me on my money journey. I know now that fear of being broke and being responsible with money are not the same thing.
Learning to be financially responsible
After I became financially independent, I quickly learned that the decisions I make with regards to my money have significant consequences. Especially as more money became available to me, I had to keep reminding myself of my small beginnings and the fact that I needed to be responsible. My decision to grow my savings instead of spending too much of material things has helped me get to a place of abundance.
5 ways to develop a healthy relationship with money
If you have an unhealthy relationship with money, you will never create the abundance you wish you had. (Source: Your Relationship with Money: 11 Ways To Make It Healthy). Here are some ways to develop a healthier relationship with money.
Be more aware
In any healthy relationship, you strive to be more aware of your actions and how they affect the other party in the relationship. It should be the same with your money. Start by unpacking how you feel about money, then list your strengths with money as well as your weaknesses with money. From today, pay attention to what you are doing with your money and how you are treating your money.
Have money goals
When we have goals we are working towards, we tend to spend time and focus to achieve them. It is essential to have money goals that you are working towards always.
Talk about money
The more we talk about money, the more we comfortable we get with it. People around you have valuable money do's and don’ts that they can share with you. Talking about money empowers you.
Learn from your money mistakes
I am a firm believer that there are lessons to be learned from the mistakes we make. Actively work to get out of the bad place you might be now because of debt or harmful spending habits. The success you achieve will fuel your future positive relationship with money.
Be financially literate
To develop a healthy relationship with money, spend time educating yourself. Learn about ways to create, grow and maintain your wealth. There are many interesting resources out there that can help you on your journey. Read books, take classes, talk to professionals, do everything you can to learn more about your money.