Ever heard those four words, “We need to talk!” and felt that sinking feeling knowing that potentially bad news is on the horizon? Well this month, we do need to talk and the subject is money. Money is for many, a taboo topic. In fact, “44 percent of Americans point to personal finances as the most challenging chat anyone can possibly have. Even the terrifying topic of death comes in second at 38 percent.” Source: Well Fargo South Africans are no different and through the process of financial coaching we often explore the reason why we struggle with our finances. One of our clients shared, “No one ever spoke about money so I got in the habit of never talking about it as an adult.” This sentiment is the reality for many. We don’t talk about it at work as obviously, discussing income with a colleague is a “no go” zone and may even be a dismissible offence in some companies. We don’t talk about it at work or at home and it is a loaded conversation to have with friends. It is no wonder we struggle with money, our lack of it or ability to manage it becomes a taboo subject and a mine field to navigate. So many people end up feeling alone and quite desperate when it comes to finding someone to talk to about their personal finances. According to Daniel Crosby, a behavioural financial expert, “Money is shorthand for happiness, power and personal value, so it can be a very scary topic.” It’s time to talk, as silence is not an answer to money matters. This August, in celebrating women’s month, we encourage you to become a money diva by having a money conversation with a financial coach, with your spouse, partner, friend and children. The benefits will outweigh the fear you feel.
Benefits of a money conversation
- Having a money conversation with a financial coach will enable you to get professional non-judgemental support. We will explore your financial goals, potential solutions to your current financial situation and offer ways to make your money work for you more effectively.
- Having a money conversation with your children will benefit you both in that they will remember that money is something that you can discuss in the home environment. You may also benefit by explaining the difference between a financial “want” and “need” – this may result in your children being less demanding and more understanding of your financial position.
- Having a money conversation with a partner or spouse, could result in getting on the same financial page in discussing and working as a team towards a common goal, like getting out of debt or perhaps buying a home.
- Having a money conversation with a friend, may make you realise that you are not alone in your financial distress. On the other hand, if they are financially smart you may have discovered a financial mentor who can guide you on your financial journey.