For many of us, a lot of emotions and feelings can get stirred up when we think about our finances. Here are three typical fears that people have about money—and tips on how to manage them.
Fear of Being Poor
Some women suffer from what’s commonly known as the “bag-lady syndrome”, a fear that causes a woman to believe her financial security could instantly vanish, thus leaving her penniless. As a result of this fear, some women tend to horde their money or invest too conservatively, both of which can be moves that hinder them from making the money they'll need for their retirement years.
How to conquer it: Take action on things that are within your control. For example, there is a possibility you could get an illness or disability that may prevent you from working, so look into getting adequate insurance to cover your expenses if this were to occur. You could also live a very long life, and you should therefore devise a savings plan that will ensure you are able to live comfortably without having your finances run out. Taking concrete steps such as these will help to minimize the risks involved in these potential scenarios, and will leave you feeling more secure about your finances.
Fear of Asking for More
Many people are motivated to earn more, but are afraid to actually ask their boss for more money. For most people, and in particular for women, the thought of asking for a raise is associated with a fear of rejection or looking greedy, or in some cases, an employee might think they are not worth more than what they’re currently making.
How to conquer it: The best way to overcome your fear is to be prepared. Come up with good reasons for why you deserve a raise, such as significant achievements you’ve made or goals that you’ve reached and even managed to exceed. By presenting your reasons to your manager in a tactful and professional manner, there is a good chance your request for a raise will be granted or at the very least, be considered. This is also a great opportunity to demonstrate to your boss that you are serious about your job performance and getting ahead.
Fear of Investing
When it comes to financial planning, people will often come up with excuses such as they’re too busy, or they’re not very good with numbers so they won’t be able to learn how to properly invest. For some people, the thought of investing is so daunting that they don’t even know where to begin, and so instead, they choose to do nothing at all.
How to conquer it: Rid yourself of the idea that you have to know everything about the stock market: instead start with small steps. For example, start by reading an article geared towards beginner investors. Don’t be intimidated if you don’t understand everything in the article, and instead, just read it to familiarize yourself with the terminology. You may also want to talk to a trusted friend who is good with money and see if she can recommend a certified financial planner. Make an appointment with the planner, making it clear to them that although you’re not ready to invest, you’d like to hear some of her thoughts on the subject. By slowly delving into the basics of investing, you’ll be able to build up your knowledge base and therefore make informed decisions about where to put your money.