Exploring Women & Money: Part One of Four
Money is never just a tangible piece of paper, or the financial value it represents. For most of us, it’s directly connected to security or anxiety, freedom or dependency, dominance or submission, and even love. It’s a symbol we relate to in a visceral, complex way that taps into our deepest emotions and anxieties.
“Money issues rarely manifest themselves openly in relationships. Instead, couples fight over what money represents,” says Olivia Mellan and Karina Piskaldo in the fascinating Psychology Today article, “Men, Women and Money.”
The failure of people to explore their money personalities and their feelings related to money can lead to deep misunderstandings and hurt. This can be true in either a personal or business partnership.
One survey found that women are likely to associate money with love and feelings of caring, while men are more likely to equal money with freedom and power. These differences–and the failure of partners of the opposite sex to recognize them–can have tremendous impact.
Not only do our personalities, experiences and childhood influences impact how we feel about money, but gender gaps play a strong role, too. Some say it’s even connected to genetic differences between men as hunters and women as gatherers. In the Broadway play, “Defending the Caveman,” Actor Rob Becker hilariously says men go out and buy a shirt, wear it until it dies, then go out and kill another shirt. As the polar opposite, women collect items they think they’ll need in the future, or that a loved one might like.
This basic instinct can deeply impact a woman-owned business without her even realizing it, as can the need to nurture others. Becoming aware of emotional triggers and instinctive behavior with money can transform something potentially harmful to a business into something valuable.
- Don’t let fear of asking for help paralyze you from moving forward. The need to consult with others–nurture–can be a powerful motivator to help you build the right financial team. Access to trusted, non-judgmental experts will give you confidence and inspire more involvement and courage when it comes to major financial decisions.
- Women often assume they know less than men about financial matters, but we’ve noticed the instinct to gather translates into a powerful benefit: women might spend more time on due diligence before making a decision, gathering information to make an educated choice.
- Those who are unsure how to prioritize spending often feel out of control financially. If you need help understanding cash flow and accounting for your business, a community banker, CPA or business operations expert can be invaluable in helping you grow your financial literacy skills. Discussions are confidential and they’re happy to help. Why not schedule an appointment today?
We thought it appropriate to share this great quote from a Huffington Post article.
“I tend to think of money in the same way I regard time. It’s a form of energy. It comes and goes according to my intentions. The clearer my intentions, the more the money flows,” said Danielle LaPorte.
A change in our financial situation starts with a change in how we think about money. Clearing out the negative thoughts about money will remove the blockages that are preventing money from flowing to us.
How do you think about money? It might be worth taking a closer personal inventory.
(This is part one of a four part series exploring women’s attitudes around money and how this impacts business, including insight from several local experts. Subscribe now so you don’t miss part two!)