Can we just take a second to talk about the ridiculous taboo that surrounds money conversations?! When we grow up our parents tell us that it’s rude to ask people how much money they earn, and how much money they have, and so it becomes an inherent belief in us that all money talk is bad talk. Yet, there’s actually a surprising number of benefits that come from talking about money with your nearest and dearest.
Take for example a conversation I had with a good friend nearly a year ago. She told me that she was earning $3 more an hour than I was for the exact same job that I was doing. Having this open and honest chat about our incomes motivated me to apply for another job which, you guessed it, paid me that extra $3 an hour. It might not sound like much, but that money chat is the reason that my annual salary increased by over $5000.
Talking to your friends about salaries, saving and investing can not only motivate you to work even harder to achieve your financial goals, but it can also be a type of financial education. If your friends are talking about that high-interest savings account they just signed up for, or how they used their credit card to get free flights, it can actually give you practical financial advice that you might not learn anywhere else (don’t listen to those idiots investing everything they have in Bitcoin though, please).
Talking to your friends about money also helps you get to know them better. We already talk to our mates about our intimate sex lives, we tell them about all the gross things we do when we’re alone and we rant to them when we realise just how much we hate our co-workers. So, why don’t we just get over our damn selves and start having money chats with our mates too. Here’s my tips to make these conversations a little less awkward.
1. Remember That Your Self-Worth Is Not Determined By The Balance Of Your Bank Account
I have this theory that the main reason we don’t like to talk about money with our mates is because we associate our self-worth with our financial situation. We’re scared to admit to our mates that we have debt because we don’t want them to look down on us. We’re scared that our friend might see us as less valuable if we don’t save as much money as they do. We’re scared that our co-worker might shame us if we don’t earn as much as they do. And we’re scared that talking about money is going to bring up all of these feelings and just make us feel shittier about our situation than we already did.
But, I’ve got some news for you, talking about your money is going to do the exact opposite of that. Anyone that shames you, or makes you feel shitty, about your financial situation is a toxic energy in your life that you don’t need. Your real mates are going to build you up and encourage you to keep working hard to better your financial situation, no matter what the circumstance. In fact, your real mates might need you to encourage them to better their financial situation. You might inspire them to work smarter, to hustle harder and to not give up on their financial goals. So what the hell are you waiting for?
2. Set Expectations Early
When you talk about money with someone, it is so important that you set the expectations for this money talk early on in the conversation. Every single person that you talk to is going to have a different relationship with money depending on things like how they were raised to feel about the topic, any past money traumas they might have experienced and what financial position they are in right now.
So, don’t put pressure on anyone to be as comfortable with money talk as you are right away. Let them know that, just because you might be happy to dish out the exact numbers on your pay cheque or the balance of your bank account, doesn’t mean that they have to be too. Taking the pressure off your mate to contribute will help them feel more relaxed about the topic and might even give them the confidence they need to start talking more openly about money in the future.
3. Normalise Money Talk
The more we talk about something, the less scary the topic becomes. It’s kind of like when you’re a kid and your parents sit you down to have that very first conversation about the birds and the bees. The first time you talk about sex is terrifying to say the least. Yet, as adults, we never seem to stop talking about sex. And that’s because we have normalised sex talk. So, why not normalise money talk too?
If you really want to start talking about money with your mates, then bring the topic up in random conversations more often. Tell your mate that you’re trying to save money when you’re buying groceries at the supermarket together. Let your friend know that you’ve set yourself a new financial goal when you’re on a coffee date with them. Tell your co-worker that you’re picking up extra shifts so that you can become debt-free faster. The more you randomly talk about money, the more people are going to relax about the topic and the easier it’s going to be to start having deep and meaningful money chats with your mates.
4. Stop Beating Around The Bush
Don’t put any pressure on your mate to contribute their personal financial situation to the conversation but please get to the damn point. Dilly-dallying around the topic is not going to do either of you any favours, so if you’ve got something to say, then man the hell up and say it. The more you umm and ahh around the topic, the more awkward it is going to be, trust me.
5. Use The COVID Pandemic To Your Advantage
The one thing we can all agree on in regards to the COVID pandemic is that it has turned the worldwide economy into a complete shit show. Everyone has been financially impacted by The Rona in one way or another, and so it’s pretty much the perfect excuse to start talking about money with your friends.
Seriously, who is going to judge you now if you say that you can’t go out for drinks because you need to save money to pay rent? Or if you say that you need to stop paying your mortgage for a little bit so that you can concentrate on building up your emergency savings? Or if you tell people that you’re feeling anxious about money because you’ve just been made redundant or because your business isn’t doing so well? No-one is going to judge you right now because you can blame it all on COVID. So, use this time to pass the blame and to start talking more openly about money with your mates. It’s going to be bloody great for your finances.
Want FREE access to my Stingy Bitch Money Saving Guide?
This simple four step guide will help you develop a money saving plan that you can actually stick to.
By clicking submit, you agree to share your email address with the site owner and Mailchimp to receive marketing, updates, and other emails from the site owner. Use the unsubscribe link in those emails to opt out at any time.
The Stingy Bitch
Based in Sydney, Australia.
Created in 2020.
This site and all of it’s contents are provided for entertainment purposes only and do not constitute personal financial advice. All products that are mentioned are general product advice only, not personal product advice. Not all options are presented and my opinions are subject to change. All content and posts have been prepared as a general summary only and is not intended to be financial advice with respect to any particular matter. This post should not be relied on with respect to any particular matter. If you have questions about any aspect of the content or this site or otherwise require personal financial advice, you ought to seek financial advice. The author disclaims liability to any person who relies on this post.
Do you have questions, comments or feedback for me? I’d love for you to get in touch!
Follow me on Instagram to be the first to know when my latest blog posts are released.