Finances, Singleness, and Mindset
A while ago, I went on Instagram Live to talk to mindset coach Laura Michael about finances, singleness, and mindset. While she is not a financial advisor, Laura has learned a lot in the last few years about financial planning as a single woman.
When Laura was in her early twenties, she assumed that she didn’t need to worry about her financial future. Sure she had questions and goals, but she assumed that investing and the like were things her husband would one day deal with. She didn’t grow up around any single women, and she certainly didn’t see any women working with finances beyond basic budgeting. But as she has gotten older, she took a long look at her life. Deciding she was putting a lot of responsibility onto a husband she may or may not one day have, she examined her internalized beliefs.
What she found surprised her. She said, “This sneaky thought kept coming into my head that, ‘maybe this is over my head to learn.’” She also described another belief that popped up, “‘Somebody else always knows better than me.’ That was keeping me from actually taking the steps to learn more about finances.”
It wasn’t easy. Laura explained that it was uncomfortable and vulnerable to begin talking about finances. It was hard to admit to friends and a financial advisor how much she didn’t know. But ultimately, she said, “I had to decide that I was willing to feel the short-term discomfort of learning as a trade for the perpetual permanent purgatory of feeling disempowered.”
If you’re like me, big questions about financial planning can be daunting. What if I ask dumb questions? What if I’m in worse shape than I thought? What if I’m bad at it? Like Laura, you might be banking on a future partner to share the burden of financial planning with you. It might feel like too much to tackle on your own.
Here’s what Laura suggests. Start small. She began by talking to her friends. She brought up the topics of investing and financial planning whenever she could. Then, she found a financial advisor who offered a free consultation and asked all of her questions, no matter how basic they felt. She’s since begun to sit down every month with her bank statements and see how she’s doing.
Her biggest piece of advice? Approach yourself with curiosity and without judgment. “Whatever your mindset is right now makes sense, so try to come at it from a curious, non-judgmental space.”
If this is new to you, here are a couple of questions to sit with:
- How did my family deal with finances growing up?
- How might that be impacting my beliefs around finances now?
- What do I wish were true about my finances?
- Where am I feeling hesitation or fear when it comes to financial planning?
- Where am I feeling curious?
- If I continue down the path I’m on, what will the outcome be in 10 years?
- How do I feel about that?
- How do I think God feels about money? What evidence do I have to support that?
- What is one big challenge I have when it comes to financial planning?
- What is one big advantage I have
- Do I have any friends in finance or friends who are good with their personal finances with whom I could begin this conversation?
I’m planning to continue developing resources on this topic, so if you have any questions or thoughts, I’d love to hear from you!
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