How women can take control of their money and grow their wealth

Came across this very well written article and thought it is very relevant to all of us…. Republishing verbatim!

Women are more educated and successful than ever. Yet, when it comes to their money, they still tend to stand on the sidelines, according to financial experts.

“We still abdicate our money decisions to other people,” said certified financial planner Stacy Francis, president and CEO of Francis Financial.

“It’s a problem that could haunt you for the rest of your life.”

According to a 2018 UBS study, 59% of widows and divorcees said they wish they had been more involved in long-term financial decisions and 74% don’t consider themselves very knowledgeable about investing.

Yet, women increasingly have more money in their pockets. By 2020, women are expected to control $22 trillion of U.S. personal wealth, according to a 2015 BMO Wealth Institute report.

“We need to stand up,” Francis said. “We can no longer ignore our money.

“Women cannot be secure, be independent, unless they understand what’s going on with their money.”

That means grasping the basics of budgeting and cash-flow management, as well as how to adequately save for retirement.

Money gives you options in life. It allows you to go back to school. It allows you to change your job.

Experts believe the lack of financial awareness stems from poor communication about money and a belief system that dates back generations.

“It’s not that many generations ago that we were still taught that we had no power in terms of money and that we had no control over our own money,” said Dr. Kate Levinson, psychologist and author of “Emotional Currency: A Woman’s Guide to Building a Healthy Relationship with Money.”

“There is still a lot of internal resistance, biological resistance and in society, as well, to women stepping up and owning their power [and] taking control over their finances,” she added.

Here are steps women can take to become financially savvy.

Own your feelings

Women are taught to remove their emotions when it comes to managing their money, said Levinson.

However, “from a feminine point of view, our feelings about money are really valuable to the decisions we make,” she said.

Therefore, she suggests embracing them.

“Get to know them and understand where they come from,” Levinson explained. “See which of our feelings have to do with us and which of the feelings are our mother’s or father’s feelings.”

Talk about it

Women learn, in part, by talking with others. Yet, there is a taboo around discussing finances.

“It’s another way that we are marginalized or cut off from fully engaging with money in our lives,” Levinson said.

So, find your people and talk about it — and realize that wherever you are with your financial knowledge, no one is going to judge you, advises Francis.

 

One of the things you can do is start a book club, and instead of fiction works, focus on non-fiction books that have something to do with money.

You can also start to talk to your friends, see what they are doing with their investments and savings.

“It works out really well if you do it over cosmos,” said Francis.

Another option is what’s called a money circle. Francis does it with her company. Every month about 15 women gather and talk about money for a couple of hours while “sipping Champagne and eating sushi.”

“We don’t necessarily talk about numbers,’ she said. “We talk about our relationship with money, we learn from each other.

“It is really powerful.”

Figure out your learning style

Get your team

Women need to make sure they have the right support, said Francis.

“Maybe it is that book club, maybe it is an hourly financial planner you see once a year like a check up with primary doctor, or maybe it’s an ongoing advisor,” she said. “Find that team.”

Another option is a money coach, which she said costs no more than your cell phone bill.

“There are so many options for women, based on where you are financially and with your budget and what your needs are,” Francis said.

Work with your partner

Just because you are financially secure doesn’t mean you cut off your partner or spouse. Instead, work together — each focusing on his or her own strengths.

“One of the most powerful things that you can do is to be on the same page with your partner, financially,” Francis said.

She suggests financial date nights, like once a month or, if you have been married for a long time, maybe once a quarter.

For Francis, she’s worked out a plan that has her husband on the indoor stationary bike, looking on and contributing as she works out their finances on the computer. Because he doesn’t like to sit still and doesn’t like to deal with money, it’s a good way to make it work, she said.

Give yourself credit

Remember, you know much more than you give yourself credit for, Francis said.

“We know more about money, investing than we actually realize,” she said.

And by striving for financial wellness, you’ll improve your entire life.

“Money gives you options in life,” Francis said. “It allows you to go back to school.

“It allows you to change your job,” she added. “Getting control of your money is an absolute must-have.”

Credit: https://frederiquecapital.news/2019/09/how-women-can-take-control-of-their-money-and-grow-their-wealth/

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8 THINGS I LEARNED FROM SAVING MONEY

savingsYears back, I never knew saving money could go a long way to help in many ways. I never knew it was one of the way to break away from paycheck to paycheck lifestyle and flee from the rat race struggle. Saving money is one of the few steps to financial freedom. With financial awareness and taking discipline steps, I was able to differentiate it all and be more focused to achieve and work towards my desired goals.
Since I got aware of the importance of saving, I try to make each year better than the other in my effort to become financially free. In saving, I started learning new skills and change in the way I see and manage my money and even think of making more money.

These are the eight things I learned from saving money.

SHIFT IN MINDSET

With savings, I had a shift in mindset about being wasteful in spending and not documenting to being positive about my financial future. With saving money my mindset had a shift from consumption mindset to be frugal in my spending. With saving, I had this mindset of what to fall back on to manage a personal project. I developed the attitude of delaying gratification to keep working towards my financial goals.

DEAL WITH DEBT

With saving, I learn to deal and manage debt and was also able to resolve it. I know of a friend you who saved really hard and had a shift from consumer behavior to frugal behavior and was also able to budget a certain amount for his debt and paid it off before the end of the year and he was able to manage his expenses well and able to continue the habit of being a good saver.

MANAGE RAINY DAY

I know I needed to start planning because the future is here and now. It’s never late than before. I had to start saving hard to plan for the great days ahead. I planned for enough cash to plan for an unexpected project that might come up unplanned and work towards future projections. With saving on rainy days, I can quickly resolve these issues. With these, the best and worst days are planned for and I worry less.

WORK TOWARDS FINANCIAL FREEDOM

With saving, I start working towards my financial freedom and start planning to retirement too soon to help achieve my financial goals. Saving have helped me a lot towards knowing its one of the vital tools to achieve my financial goals.

SAVE MORE AND BE DISCIPLINED TOWARDS YOUR GOALS

I started saving more, increasing the percentage I save from income. I became more disciplined in my saving because I could achieve financial freedom through my consistency and focus to achieve my goals. In the past, any little cash that gets into my hands will be spent on expenses but now, I quickly save them because I budget my finance. When I get any little change, I quickly save to help increase my savings and grow my confidence in my financial goals.

INVEST

With me being able to be disciplined with my saving, I developed a habit of investing monthly, quarterly depending on my financial goals and how I planned it.
I was able to buy stocks, ETF’s and many more and work hard and made my money work for me to achieve financial freedom.
When am I less busy, I sign into the app to see how my investment is doing and how slow or fast it is growing and its impact on my net worth.
Investing opened a new world to me through the act of disciplined saving and since that period, I never looked back. I look for ways of saving and investing more and learn more about investment products in the market and look for a better avenue to expand my investment in the financial world.

GOOD LIFE

With consistency in saving, I grew confidence about the future that I can have a good life. If only I remain committed to the act of saving and keep working towards my financial freedom.
I know how to manage my finance and I can delay gratification. I can buy the things I want any time if it adds value to me. With it, I can plan towards to a good life and future through consistency in saving and working hard towards my financial freedom.

BUDGETING AND PLANNING SKILLS

With saving, I developed the habit of budgeting my finance to know where my money is going and what really made me accumulate expenses, how to cut my expenses, managing the ones I need, to help save more money. I now delegate money to manage different expenses and for planning for my future project. I was able to manage my fixed and variable expenses well if likely adjust it to fit my lifestyle to help get my desired result.
With budgeting, I realize I had more money and had to start saving more and more and it kept me motivated to look for more ways monthly to cut down my expenses and save well.
Now, I plan my finance extremely well and work everyday to become more better and keep working to achieve my financial freedom.

CONCLUSION

With what I learned from saving money, it made me become financially aware of where I am, how I need to make the necessary change to become financially free or end in financial woes in years to come. I worked hard, put my money in places that made it work hard for me while I focus on expanding my financial education. Through saving, my account become organized and working now to achieve more financial goals that will lead to my financial freedom.