Common Money Mindset Hurdles for WomenBy Katherine M. Dean, CFP® | April 24, 2019
The public conversation in our culture is finally shifting toward gender equality. This is obviously a step in the right direction, but we still have a long way to go when it comes to leveling the playing field, especially where money is concerned.
Women in the U.S. currently earn 80 cents for every dollar a man makes. They also step out of the workforce more frequently to care for others; 60 percent of all family caregivers are women. What’s more, women tend to outlive men, which means they typically need a more robust nest egg than their male counterparts.
In many ways, the financial deck is stacked against women—but that doesn’t mean they can’t achieve abundance and financial success. It’s easy to lose confidence in the face of all these obstacles, but breaking through them really comes down to one critical detail: Your money mindset.
What we’re talking about here is your personal relationship with money. And, most importantly, what you believe about how you relate to money. The gender inequalities mentioned above set the stage for a lack of financial confidence among women; something that takes awareness and intention to overcome.
As a longtime wealth advisor, I’ve seen firsthand how jarring it can be for women to take the financial reins after sitting on the sidelines for so many years. Following a divorce or the death of a spouse, many women feel wholly unprepared to manage their own money and investments.
Meanwhile, others who are already financially independent aren’t making the most of their money. Women, for example, tend to hold more cash savings and invest in the markets less, ultimately earning a smaller return over the long haul. It’s worth noting, however, that those who are confident enough to invest usually outperform men.
Financial success is within reach for all women. It begins with overcoming these common limiting money mindsets that hold too many women back.
“I don’t know enough about money.”
A whopping 56 percent of married women let their spouses make key financial decisions for them. Translation: Well over half are taking a backseat to their own financial life, relying on their significant others to make the best decisions for them. It’s little wonder that only 52 percent of women say they feel confident managing investments; many simply aren’t flexing this muscle on a regular basis.
“I don’t believe in my ability to lead.”
The truth of the matter is that women earn less for doing the same work as men. Closing the gender wage gap requires women to advocate for themselves in the workplace, both in salary negotiations and getting promoted. One study put out by Korn Ferry found that a staggering 65 percent of female CEOs didn’t believe they could actually be a CEO until someone else told them so. Put it another way: They needed external validation before they believed it for themselves.
“If I’m confident and assertive, people won’t like me.”
This is a legitimate concern for many women in the workplace, and it has a direct impact on their financial lives. In a great number of performance reviews, high-achieving women are described quite differently than men, more often being labeled as abrasive or aggressive. It’s easy to see how this kind of messaging might make women feel self-conscious about speaking their minds and really going for their business goals.
All of these limiting money beliefs make it that much harder for women to take control of their financial lives. At Opal Wealth Advisors, we’re out to change that so women can break free from thoughts and beliefs that are holding them back.
We flip the script to encourage positive money mindsets. This involves cultivating the right money habits, establishing a mindset of success, and laying the foundation to succeed at hitting your mark. The way to transform your financial life is to shift your mindset from the inside out.
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