Discovering your Financial Role
Opposites attract. You’ve heard this phrase your entire life, but could it be true for your money habits as well? Often in a marriage, one partner drifts toward the role of the spender and the other toward the role of the saver. Maybe you were always on opposite ends of the spectrum, or maybe as your lives became more intertwined with living under the same roof, sharing the bills, and having kids, one of you slowly transitioned your role. On the surface this might seem like an inconvenient truth; after all, there would be a lot fewer fights and stress surrounding money if your spouse could just agree with you, right? While it does require more communication and compromises, being on opposing ends of the spender vs. saver spectrum can be a blessing because it offers balance. It is built-in checks and balances for working toward your financial goals, while also enjoying the life you live along the way.
Are you the spender or the saver?
This month, spend some time in self-discovery. Who are you within the realm of your family’s finances? Are you the spender or the saver? Spend time focusing on the role you play in reaching your family financial goals. Then think about the benefits from the role your spouse plays...and yes, there are benefits! If you’re the spender and you feel like your spouse is always another obstacle between you and the next purchase, remember to consider how this has helped your family to stay on track for saving or investing. If you’re the saver and you feel like your spouse is always impeding your progress, remember to think about the fun their ideas have brought to your family and how it allowed you to have more quality time together. Think balance. Sometimes it can be uncomfortable, but it’s necessary!
You may come to the conclusion that you and your spouse are both spenders or both savers, and that’s okay! Just remember that the other end of the spectrum is important for financial success and create ways to ensure you have balance moving forward!
What do you value?
How you allocate your money has the potential to say a lot about who you are or what you value. Do you ever feel like you are just going in circles without gaining any traction? Maybe you get halfway through the month and think “Man, where did that paycheck go!?” The truth is money talks. So take a look at your habits and spend some time sitting with the purchases you make. This gives you the time and the freedom to discover more about yourself and your goals. Work toward making your purchase history something that aligns with what you value and that accurately portrays “This is who I am and who I want to be financially.”
Are you practicing contentment?
Self-discovery and consistently making adjustments is so important for reaching your goals and growing; but again, it requires balance. Balance improvements with contentment. It is okay to be constantly working toward financial goals, but learn to be content with where you are financially along the way. Theodore Roosevelt said it best: “Comparison is the thief of joy.” So, discover who you are and work hard to meet those goals, but don’t forget to love your journey at every step along the way!
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