3 situations where we should all be talking about money, according to a CFP

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At some point in our lives, we’ve probably all heard the conventional wisdom “never discuss politics, religion or money”. I understand the idea behind the advice. These topics can be very polarizing and often give rise to heated debate. Discussing any of these can be difficult, but in general disagreements have the potential to lead to productive conversations and new perspectives.

When it comes to money, I believe one of the best ways to learn more is to talk to others about their experiences. Open money conversations can help you share knowledge and learn from others. They can also help you develop empathy and a strong bond with the people around you. After all, money is a very personal and emotional subject. Your willingness to open up about it can completely change the dynamics of your relationships.

There are three environments where I think we can make the most of money conversations: with friends and family, with your partner or spouse, and at work.

Money talks with friends and family

I was fortunate enough to have money conversations with my family growing up. Every month, I watched my grandmother as she meticulously kept her budget in a green notebook. By witnessing his good money habits, I learned the importance of saving and living within his means. My uncles also taught me the importance of saving for rainy days. As I paid for my college education and eventually worked as a financial planner, I took these lessons with me.

Having money conversations with your family has countless benefits. Even when you’ve made mistakes or have regrets, sharing your experience with others could prevent someone you love from repeating the same mistake.

Having the opportunity to speak with others who know more than you or to share the knowledge you have accumulated along the way is beneficial for everyone. Throughout my career, I have seen many first generation millionaires who fail to teach their children the many lessons they have learned. A Williams Group Wealth Consultancy study has shown that 70% of wealthy families lose their wealth in the second generation and 90% in the third. One of the reasons for this drastic drop is the lack of communication. Teaching your kids about finances and sharing your intentions for the money you’ve worked so hard to accumulate can help your wealth last for generations.

Sharing silver lessons with friends is also a great way to learn and support each other. As you learn new things, you can share them with those around you. Achieving financial success can be rewarding, but it’s no fun when you do it on your own. Find a group of friends who share common values ​​and goals, and hold each other accountable. This way you can celebrate your successes together.

Money talks with your spouse or partner

Money remains one of the main causes of divorce. Having open money conversations with your partner – especially before marriage – not only helps maintain a happy and healthy marriage, but can also play a role in building wealth.

We each have a story about money that is rooted in our life experiences. These experiences can shape our values, attitudes and behaviors when it comes to money. Sharing your financial history with your partner can help you understand each other’s perspectives and the “why” behind your financial decisions.

It would be best if you also take the time to understand your financial situation, your life goals, and how you will distribute financial roles and responsibilities. These discussions can help bring out potential money issues so that you can be on the same page and decide how best to resolve disagreements.

Communication is essential in all aspects of a relationship. Prioritizing money communication with your partner can help create a safe space and a deeper connection. If you’re already married or in a long-term relationship, it’s not too late. The sooner you approach money as a couple, the better.

Money talks at work

Of all the environments, the workplace is one of the most challenging environments for financial conversations. But for women and people of color, these conversations can bring huge benefits.

Talking about money, especially pay, can create the transparency needed to increase pay equity. Studies show that gender and race pay gaps can result in up to $ 1 million in lost income over a 40-year career. Many employers avoid the idea of ​​discussing wages with their colleagues, but the right of employees to discuss their salary is protected by law.

Conversations about money aren’t just good for employees. As a business owner, I learned a lot from my colleagues about the finances of the business. The other financial planners and business owners in my network have been very open about the fees they charge, business expenses, profit margins, and the mistakes they make. As I have had the opportunity to speak, write and consult, my colleagues have been open about what they earn. These conversations have helped me understand my value, and as my business grows, I have a strong and supportive network that I can rely on for advice.

Talking about money with others gives us all the opportunity to learn, grow, and support each other on our financial journeys. Of course, you can’t talk openly about money with everyone. Of course, you have to take the environment into account and find out if the other person is up for having a conversation about money. But when you find those open to it, there are many valuable lessons you can learn and share along the way.


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