It is difficult for me to talk about money. It always has been. I spent my 20s in debt – buying anything in sight and taking trips – never to see the bigger picture. I lived – much like my own mother did – from paycheck-to-paycheck and I didn’t think about retirement or even a life beyond the current moment. I was young and without kids, why would I? I somehow emerged from that sea of credit card bills a little wiser but still not able to see life beyond the present until I had children. I definitely don’t spend the way I used to but now the issue of money for me is to be more conscious and thoughtful about how I spend in order to save for the future. To save for my children.
I hear this almost daily from my financially-savvy husband as he pulls out detailed spreadsheets outlining our bills, what we make, how much we can spend every week (an allowance of sorts) and how much we should be saving every month. I get it. I really do but with two children I find it difficult to always stick with a plan.
So what happens is this cycle of arguments over a latte or something seemingly small that I purchased or extra hours with the babysitter.We are both frustrated and essentially want the same thing – financial security – but getting on the same path to get there is challenging. For me, it isn’t just about committing to a plan, but really understanding the bigger picture. To understand money. It is a discussion I don’t enjoy because I am ignorant about it but it also one that I know I need to learn more about in order to have control over our finances.
At a recent event hosted by GoGirlFinance.com, I was able to learn more about money and how to save amongst a group of smart and business savvy women at the Warren Tricomi salon in Manhattan.
Amidst blowouts, manicures and delicious food, I learned more about money from personal finance expert and author Manisha Thakor. Her candor and honesty were incredibly refreshing as she outlined some financial literacy basics for the crowd.
She spoke out how women need to think about their money in terms of what you make per hour. So, if your household income is 120,000 you should divide this by 2,000. This amount will put your salary into an hourly rate enabling you to question your next purchase. So that $5 latte might not seem that expensive but it might have taken you 1/2 hour to earn (depending on your salary). I know I don’t think twice about small purchases but this simple and effective formula of putting my work hours into what I buy will really help me determine if an item is actually worth the purchase. Sometimes that latte will be worth it, other times not as much.
She also spoke more about saving – despite whatever age you are. She mentioned that the earlier you save, the more you will. She said you can start small, but to make a conscious effort to save and not touch this money.
She also spoke about other topics I never think about – specifically Estate Planning, Wills, Life Insurance, Power of Attorney and Disability. I never think about wills and I am not alone where over 60% of women don’t have them. Manisha said they are as simple as filling out an online form – a quick way to protect your children and your belongings. Definitely something I will be doing this year.
At this frank and welcoming discussion, I loved how Manisha broke down the tools to understand more about money. This along with the resources provided by GoGirlFiance.com is enabling women to share information in a positive way and create the dialogue to help us all take control of our financial futures. Freedom, choice, money. I think I am starting to get it.
For more information, please visit: http://www.gogirlfinance.com/
I was not paid for this post.
I did receive a goody bag at the event and a session of classes from Physique 57 through a raffle!