Why is money so complicated? It tends to be such a hush-hush topic of discussion, however it literally touches every part of our lives. It touches our professional lives – hello Captain Obvious. It affects where we live, where we play, and even who we hang out with. We tend to socialize with the same people who earn relatively the same income as us, and who also SPEND like us. Money affects our kids, our marriage, and our family tree. I think we can all agree money is in every aspect of our lives. However, why is it so awkward to talk about it?
Maybe it is just me, but I have noticed people are more willing to discuss their sex lives over their money. Sometimes it isn’t too bad, and other times I am thinking “Please, please give me a break from the visual”. However, did you know it is good to talk about money? Did you know that one step to gaining control of your money is putting it out there in the open? Follow along and you’ll see what I mean.
1. You’re Dirty Little Secret isn’t Really a Secret
If 70% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, then chances are you’re not the only one. We learned this and we were so relieved. We had this dirty little secret of being broke and realized we weren’t alone. When you realize this, it opens up discussion. How were we so naive to this simple fact? I had friends from work who made the same amount of money as us and who had the same expensive toys we had. Why would I believe they were rich and we were broke? The moment we realized we were just like everyone else was the same moment we realized it was time to be different.
Now you understand that you’re not a weirdo – yet. This next step is where you want to make sure you continue the conversation about money with your friend or family member. When you decide to take the step towards financial freedom, you could use an accountability partner. I have seen so many people (the Peaches included) attempt to do this on their own. I don’t know why we are so afraid to let others in on our little secret debt-free plan when we could actually have used their help. Tell people what you are doing. No guarantees they will gladly join you, but you may still get a cheerleader on your side. Sometimes we need those atta-boys!
2. You Need an Accountability Partner
The people you tell will be your accountability partners whether they want to be or not.
Scenario 1: They fully support you and want you to succeed with your money problem. This is the awesome friend or family member that has your back. They call you to see how it’s going when they know you are delivering pizzas on a Saturday night for extra cash. They tell all their friends you are selling your crap so you can get rid of it sooner. They even bring you a cold beer to let you know you’re doing great. Scenario 1 is awesome.
Scenario 2: These are the people who expect you to fall flat on your face. These friends or family members don’t think you can do it or they don’t want you to do it because they aren’t willing to sacrifice to your level. Believe it or not, this type of accountability partner is even better than scenario 1. Why? Not many people like to hear “I told you so”. I was willing to do whatever it took to avoid hearing the “I told you so” from the nay-sayers. This one thing caused me to work and work until we were out of debt. I will never forget the satisfaction of achieving our goal when others knew we couldn’t possibly do it. Ending up on the right side of “I told you so” is a completely legitimate motivational tool you should use if you are given the opportunity.
3. You Will Help Others
When you do something exciting, it is hard not to talk about it. When we were literally destroying our debt, we weren’t shy about advertising it. We had found a whole new way to live life with our money and it was a complete game changer. Of course we were going to talk about it! When you are excited about something in your life, you can’t stop thinking about it. You go through your day with this one thing laser focused in your brain. What you don’t realize is you have an audience paying attention to you. Remember, 70% of Americans are paycheck-to-paycheck. This also means 70% of Americans probably wish their money situation was better. I am big believer in success breeds success. It is contagious. Hang around a bunch of millionaires your entire life and you probably will become a millionaire. Hang around enough good-looking people your entire life and you’ll probably be better looking (I think). My point is, YOU are motivating others to gain control of their lives too. We were shocked to hear this statement over and over:
“We knew if you could do it, then we could too”
The students we have had in our classes have noticed the same:.
“My parents sold their luxury car to get out of debt too”
“My brother just started his envelope system after seeing ours in action”
“My friend just cut cable too and now we go to our other friend’s house to watch TV”
“My boss is now asking me about getting out of debt, this is so weird“
Speak up! You never know who is listening.
4. You May Learn Something
We were once talking to a couple about money and they dropped a bombshell on us….they had been doing awesome with money way before us! What?! We had no idea and wanted to know more. We learned they had been very private about their money because they didn’t want to be weird. Sigh. 🙁 They were finally able to open up a little about how they were so successful with money and dinner turned into a mini mastermind on personal finance. We learned new tips, tricks, and ideas that have even appeared on this blog. They completely blew our minds and have even caused us to sharpen our money skills over the last few years. Listen! You never know what you may learn.
5. You Will Stay in the Game
Someone I really admire and look up to taught me the best way to learn something is to first see it, then do it, and then TEACH it.We often do the first two very well and never reach the third level. However, teaching is the most valuable part of learning something. Teaching the subject is when it starts to become automatic. It is when our brain builds a permanent file on the subject and we do things subconsciously. Talking about money to anyone who would listen soon turned into teaching others how to handle their money. We didn’t realize it, but we have no choice but to continue onto the path of financial freedom. When you say something, do something, and teach something, you become part of it.
Talking about money is awkward, I get it. But, what is working for you and what isn’t? When things aren’t working anymore, you need to change the recipe. Have you ever heard something so crazy that you think to yourself – this is crazy enough to work?
When Pat was a freshman at ASU, his coach pulled him to the side and told him he would be redshirting (being a practice player) for the first year. This is normal and is what 99% of players do. Pat looked at his coach and said, “Coach, you can play me or not play me, but I’m only going to be here for four years, and then I’ve got things to do with my life.”
Pat Tillman ended up starting his freshman year. The coach had never heard a kid talk or behave like that. Pat was different. People who BEHAVE with money are also different.
Do you want financial freedom? Think about it,TALK about it, and be about it. It’s up to you.
Be good to yourself, your friends, your love, and BE GOOD TO YOUR MONEY!
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