Talking about money can be difficult for many reasons, not the least of which is that it’s often considered a taboo topic. When you avoid difficult money conversations and sweep issues under the rug, you can cause yourself unnecessary stress and anxiety.
In my article How to Face Financial Stress with Courage and Confidence, I talked about how financial stress can cause issues with our health and our relationships. In this article, I want to give you my first tip on how to reduce financial stress: start by just talking about money.
Money is fun to talk about when you sell a stock at a higher price. Not so much when you don’t. Money is fun to talk about when you pay two bucks for a scratch-off lottery ticket and walk away with ten bucks. It’s not so much fun to talk about how previous scratch-offs were losers.
So why is it so easy to talk about the good part of getting money and not so easy to talk about the bad parts?
Baby Boomers have been conditioned not to talk about money. When I grew up, my mom and dad had the attitude that talking about money was not considered polite or appropriate. They are the same way to this day! Discussing how much you make, how much you have, or the ups and downs of your household finances would be breaking a deeply ingrained social taboo.
For most of our society, money isn’t a topic we discuss among friends.
To make things worse, we run into three types of people that make us not want to be open about money. One type is the person that flaunts money and comes across as boasting or showing off. The other extreme is the person that complains about never having any money. And the third person is the one that ALWAYS forgets to have money with them so you can “pick up the tab.”
So, it’s not surprising that we often struggle to have open and honest conversations about this off-limits subject.
Talking about your personal finances might be uncomfortable at first. It may make you feel like you are a financial failure. However, talking about money, especially with those that are closest to you, can be a powerful way to uncover hidden problems and address pressing concerns.
Sweeping money issues under the rug will never help. The sooner you have a difficult conversation, the sooner you will find relief. Avoiding difficult conversations will not make the problems go away. You can only make progress by being honest about your financial situation and getting help if you need it.
Seek advice from a trusted source and work with a financial advisor to discuss how proper planning can help you reduce financial stress. Feel free to reach out to my office at 803-985-2447 or at firstname.lastname@example.org to let us help.
Look out for the next article where I take a deeper look at Getting Real About Your Personal Finances.
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.
Hiram “Chip” Hutchinson, III, is the President of Hutchison Group, Inc. (HG), an independent financial services firm assisting clients in and around Rock Hill, South Carolina. Chip drives strategies designed to better enrich the client’s experience, resulting in a deeper client relationship and a broader understanding of client financial needs. HG has been offering personal financial guidance for more than two decades. Learn more about them at hutchisongroup.com.