Love and money. They go together like… peanut butter and jelly.
Really, if you don’t work out the money part now, you can almost guarantee more headaches and arguments later.
Who wants to fight over money?
Take a few steps to building trust and help your finances at the same time.
1. Trust each other.
Trust equals love. If you think you love someone, but don’t think you trust them…well, sorry to tell you, man, but that equals no dice on the love spectrum. Sit down with one another and ask the questions so that you both know the track that you are on in your financial goals.
Now this may not be Valentine’s dinner conversation, but schedule some time to talk, without distraction, to clarify what your motivation is with money. This one conversation can eliminate so much future frustration and anger.
Caveat (and a bonus): As you become more clear about your partner’s goals in finance, this will flow over to other parts of your life. Building even more trust between you. How’s that for a win? Build that bond.
2. Share goals.
You need saving goals, weekly spending goals, retirement goals, and any kind of rainy day extra goals. Have you taken the time to talk about it? Make sure that if you are saving for a new car, your description of a new car and your partner’s description of a new are the same new car.
Decide the goals. And then, make sure to write them down. They say that, “A goal not written down is just a wish.” We see people around us wishing to have a better financial situation, yet never taking a step toward that. Why? Because they have lost perspective. Keep your goal clear. Write it down. Place that note somewhere you can see it every day.
3. Allow freedom for each partner to spend as they determine.
Sometimes you just need a new purse. Or shoes. Or lipstick. (Oh, the lipstick…) Or that really cute…”Thing” that would perfect on your mantle, or kitchen table. Your spouse may not get why that matters to you.
He sees that lipstick and asks, “it’s another pink lipstick, and don’t you think you have enough pink lipsticks?” To which you politely inform him that, “Oh nooo! This has an underlying woody, earthy tone you’ve never seen before, allowing you to use it with the neutral palette more than any other lipstick you have.”
But we haven’t started on his purchases… Cables for computers, gadgets and electronics, anyone?
Golf paraphernalia? (See. You can tell I don’t get it. I should have said equipment. But in my mind it’s just paraphernalia.)
The point is, if each of you get a little freedom amidst the challenge of doing with less, you are able to stick to the goal even longer. When you’re budgeting and working on finance goals, it can feel like a sacrifice. You are adults. You know that there’s no point in whining. You’ve got to have a little breathing room.
Besides, he may not understand the purpose of the lipstick, but he sure appreciates it when you wear it with that outfit.
4. Build even more trust.
Each step helps you build to the next step in love and money. Establish trust. Share goals. Allow freedom. All three steps help you to build more trust. So you decide on some new goals. Allow a bit more freedom, because you’ve established trust. And it builds.
One day at a time. Just like a great love story.
What is one way you make a love and money a part of your life?