Women wear so many different hats in life. They are wives, mothers, organizers, business owners, etc. You name it and a lady is involved. Because of a woman’s powerful intuition and ability to masterfully coordinate, they are often tasked with the managing of money. With so many things already on their plate, adding something as important as handling money can bring much unwanted stress for women. According to a study from Credit Karma, nearly 1 in 3 women in the U.S. feels discouraged about her finances. So how do women rise beyond this discouragement? The answer is resiliency. One characteristic I see repeatedly in women, especially from my wife, mother, and mother-in-law, is their ability to recover from life’s difficulties. After careful observation, I’ve narrowed down a woman’s resiliency into 3 distinct qualities: intentionality, dedication, and courage. Let’s explore how how these qualities result in solid money management.
To be intentional is to be purposeful. That’s right. Managing money is to be done on purpose. Show me an intentional woman and I’ll show you a woman of deliberate participation. Passing the buck to your spouse, boyfriend, or 3rd party and ignoring the reality of your financial situation is irresponsible. Setting both short-term and long-term goals with money is a great way to be engaged in the money conversation. According to Dr. Sarah Fallaw (we’ll mention her a few times), researcher and author of The Next Millionaire Next Door, “planning” or setting goals for your financial future is one of the six behaviors of building wealth. Intentionality with money demonstrates a woman has made it a priority rather than an afterthought.
When someone is dedicated to a cause, they are committed to doing what’s necessary to see it through. Money works this way. The management of money isn’t a one-time event, it’s a journey of choices that requires discipline. The foundational element to being disciplined financially is creating AND following a budget. Best selling author and leadership guru John C. Maxwell says “a budget is telling your money where to go, instead of wondering where it went.” Dedication also requires focus. Just because you CAN buy something doesn’t mean you SHOULD. Ask yourself two questions when your inner girl wants you to splurge: 1) Do I need this or do I want it? 2) If I buy this, how will I effectively use it in my life? Fight the desire to compare lifestyle with others. Dr. Sarah Fallaw highlights “social indifference,” not succumbing to social pressure to buy the latest thing, as another behavior of building wealth.
American writer Mark Twain defined courage this way: “Courage is not the absence of fear, it is acting in spite of it.” Biologically speaking, women can process more details than men and have greater situational awareness. This gift of brainstorming can also be a hindrance to decision making and taking risks. Only a mere 24% of women are likely to put money into savings and only 22% have money invested in the stock market (Credit Karma). Dr. Sarah Fallaw notes that “confidence” in financial management, investing, and household leadership is another one of the six behaviors of wealth building. Acts of courage build confidence. Ladies, build confidence by having mindset of continuous learning especially when it comes to investing and overall financial literacy. Historically speaking, the stock market has returned an average of 10% (Nerdwallet). Find a good financial advisor or planner that you know, like, trust, and has the heart of a teacher, not a salesman. 3 books I recommend for good financial stewardship are The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey, The Millionaire Next Door by Dr. Thomas J. Stanley (Father of Dr. Sarah Fallaw), and Simple Wealth Inevitable Wealth by Nick Murray.
Intentionality, dedication, and courage make up a powerful trio. Every woman has the ability to tap into these wonderful qualities. Ladies, you are resilient! Money is a resource that touches every single aspect of your life. It’s up to you to manage it, or the lack of doing so will manage you. Manage well ladies!