Money is Taboo, Let's Talk About It
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Why is it so fucking hard to talk about money?
There’s a lot to unpack, but let’s be real. It’s because society hates poor people. Society also despises the ultra-wealthy, and some everyday rich folks. We make a lot of assumptions about people based on the amount of money we think they have and there are a lot of emotions wrapped up into it.
In some way, we all have these judgements, it's deep in our gross capitalistic society. When we ask people what they do, is it because we’re curious about their day to day or we want to gauge how much money they make? If we think they have a lot of money, are we surprised if they say they’re an artist, rather than a lawyer or doctor? Why does the starving artist trope exist? How do we end it?
WE HAVE TO TALK ABOUT MONEY
I know it can feel awkward and weird at first, but we have to talk about money more. Talk about it with friends, colleagues, family, or strangers on the internet. When you start to unpack money stats, it’s pretty clear that people are struggling. If you feel alone, or that everyone else has it figured out, I promise, that's not the reality. Here are some stats about Americans and their money.
According to NerdWallet, in 2021 the total amount of credit card debt owed was $360.56 billion. With a B.
CNBC reported this summer that 58% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck.
StudentLoanhero.com tells us 48 million Americans have student loan debt.
Wherever you are on your financial fitness journey, I PROMISE you are not alone. Deep down, a lot of us are insecure about our own financial knowledge, and it keeps us from taking action. And the good news is, you can change it! There's a lot of work ahead, but it all starts with talking about money.
I used to think my life was over because of STUDENT LOAN debt.
When I first looked closely at my student loan debt and understood the interest, I thought my life was over. I'd been leaning on credit cards, and letting my emotions drive my financial choices. It led to a paycheck to paycheck cycle with a steady credit card balance growing. I didn't know who to ask for help because I felt stupid for having the debt with no plan.
Tiffany Aliche, “You have to forgive yourself, because if you’re carrying around the shame that means you’re shielding yourself from the solution,” she says. “It’s OK. You’re not a terrible person. You don’t kick puppies; you used your credit card. It happens.”
It wasn't until I met with a Financial Trainer who didn't make a face when I told her I had over $25k in student loan debt and hardly any savings to my name before my feelings changed. That first conversation, just saying the numbers out loud, ignited a transformation for me. A weight was lifted from my shoulders, and I was able to focus on solutions for the first time. If talking about money makes you feel weird, that's totally normal. The only way to get better is by practicing. Start by talking to yourself, your friends, and even a professional if you're ready for a big change. If you don't have anyone you feel like you can talk with about money, you can practice with me! Leave a comment here on the blog, or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Hungry Artist Resources & Recommendations:
If you want to work one-on-one with a Certified Financial Trainer, schedule a complimentary consultation today with The Financial Gym. I've been a member since 2019 and it's the best thing I've ever done for my finances.
If you want to read Tiffany Aliche's book, Get Good With Money buy it from an Independent Bookstore. Bookshop.org is a great one online and Libro.fm is my favorite place for audiobooks.