This Sunday, our pastor preached:
A vow or a promise that you make in all honesty and truth, simply makes you accountable, it does not make you capable!
He was talking specifically about the skills required to maintain a successful marriage. The same is true for all aspects of marriage or partnership – including how you are going to manage your money. Usually, one partner has a greater numerical aptitude than the other and so steps up to the role. They may be terrific at it, and take to it like a duck to water. Alternatively, they may be quite unprepared or unequipped to do so, yet the task defaulted to them for whatever reason and they struggle along; with balancing the checkbook representing the pinnacle of their level of competency. And sadly, sometimes not even that!
When a marriage or partnership ends, either through death or divorce, the Suddenly Single folks who were not the money partner have two challenges to overcome. The first is coming to an understanding of what the other partner achieved (mistakes and all.) The second is to start immediately learning about money, often from the ground up.
Learning about money can be a full time job in and of itself. Add grief, regret, guilt and shock on top of that and now the survivor has the simultaneous task of dealing with money and making financial decisions while in the throws of grief and recovery. We can’t expect ANY person to cope with and manage two full-time jobs, let alone do either of them well. She (or he) either isn’t going to be able to grieve fully, (which Elizabeth Kubler Ross taught us years ago will be devastating) or they won’t be able to deal with money responsibly, which may have massive and devastating long-term consequences, especially for women, who generally outlive their partners by 7 y ears.
Women, particularly, need to learn some money basics earlier than when there’s an ambulance or funeral home in their rear view mirror. Coaxing and coaching women into a meaningful relationship with their money NOW, is the passion in my belly. In speaking with thousands of women over the years and across the country, women continually ask, “how can I know what I need to know, and not get scared and bogged down in the process?” followed quickly by “I’m paralyzed about money ’cause I’m afraid I’ll make a mistake and run out, becoming a bag lady”. I could wait no longer to write Common Sense Money Guide For Women, which answers just those questions and more. It’s also why I host a weekly podcast and travel all over the country talking to women about money.
Did you know that over 51% of American women overtly admit their fear of becoming a bag lady, and over 50% of those make over $100,000 per year? So, this fear cuts across socioeconomic lines; it’s not logical like most fears in life. I gain immeasurable joy by relieving women of their bag lady fears; which releases boundless energy to focus on what they really want to do in this life; achieving their individual bucket lists.
Yet, it’s not women’s fault. It’s not anyone fault that they become anxious and terrified of making a mistake investing their family’s finances. Fear is natural. Everybody feels fear in life; uncertainty and doubt. We’re all fearful from time to time, and yet as Dr. Susan Jeffers states in her landmark book, Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway, so many people are out there doing whatever their fear was despite that fear, so ultimately it’s how we handle that fear that defines our ultimate success in life.
As we learn how to move from holding our fear from a position of pain (powerlessness, victim) to a position of power (choice, energy) we will not only achieve our goals much more rapidly yet we will also relieve and release harmful stressors to our minds and bodies. WOW….that’s powerful progress!
Why wait to gain that freedom and joy? Why wait until you can’t fully concentrate on your money, because you are also grieving? I urge you to commit to your own empowerment, your own next step, your own journey, and I will be right beside you as you do–through these instructional pages and through my blog. Join me in learning the basics; what you need to know, ALL written in English, not financese….imagine that!
We Can Do It Women™