Before you read these five tips on how to stop fighting over money in your relationship, think about this question. It’s based on Will Smith’s quote about about money.
Questions about money and relationships:
Are your money fights really about money? Or are your “fights about money” really about something else, such as values, character differences, and different money personalities?
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“Money and success don’t change people; they merely amplify what is already there.” said Will Smith.
Before you rush into applying different tips for saving your marriage and learning how to stop fighting over money in your relationship, think about the bottom line (and not just your financial bottom line!).
Is your relationship worth saving? Is your marriage worth fighting for? Or, are the fights over money just a symptom of deeper, more serious relationship problems?
5 Tips on How to Stop Fighting Over Money in Your Relationship
Knowing how to talk about money problems is the first tip on how to stop fighting over money. Learning how to talk about money without blowing up is a skill — and it’s the first step to peace and happiness! Give yourself time to learn how to talk about money without freaking out, and how to stop fighting over money in your relationship. Creating better financial habits and easing debt problems is a process.
1. Figure out the root of your money problems. Are you a saver married to a spender? Do you not earn enough money? Do you spend beyond your budget, or are you hugely in debt? Are your financial goals unrealistic — or nonexistent? Do you lie about money to your spouse — or you struggling with financial infidelity? The first step towards stopping money fights is to dig up the root of the problem. You won’t stop fighting over money in your relationship if money isn’t the root of the problem.
2. Talk to a financial planner or life coach – or read books about money. Sometimes we’re too enmeshed in our problems to see the possible solutions, which is why counsellors and coaches are so important. An objective perspective can help you stop fighting over money as a couple, see where your money problems come from, and help you find the most effective solutions. You don’t need to spend lots of money on a financial planner or money coach. Sometimes reading the right books or attending free financial seminars is all you need to stop fighting about money as a couple.
3. Set goals that represent who you are as a couple. Do your neighbors own a boat, three cars, and a cottage by the lake? Let go of competitive feelings — don’t buy into that “keep up with the Jones” mentality. Instead, figure out the financial goals that best suit you as a couple. Where do you want to be in five years? What kind of life do you want to be living? Where do you want your career to go? It’s okay to get heated and passionate when you talk about your financial goals! Maybe you don’t need to learn how to stop fighting over money in your relationship – maybe you just need to learn how to turn down the heat that money ignites.
4. Find financial solutions that maximize your strengths as a couple. Discovering and working with your individual strengths won’t just help you solve money problems in your relationship, it’ll bring you closer as a couple. For instance, my husband’s natural strength is financial investments and income taxes, so he makes the bulk of our investment decisions and does our taxes each year. My strength is pinching pennies and saving money on groceries and gifts, so I “get” to go shopping (which isn’t much fun when you hate shopping, like I do!). This tip on how to stop fighting over money in your relationship is about finding out what you’re good at, finding out what your spouse is good at, and being free to work with your strengths.
5. Practice financial habits that go beyond solving money problems. “Habits and rituals can be powerful tools that help us squeeze the most from the day and close the gap, but only if we consciously create them,” writes Robert Pagliariani in The Other 8 Hours: Maximize Your Free Time to Create New Wealth & Purpose. “When we Habitualize, we dump our negative and mediocre habits and replace them with positive habits and rituals that enrich our lives and bring us closer to our goals.”
Have you and your spouse incorporated positive money habits and rituals into your life? For example, do you revisit your financial goals every month, have honest discussions about money every week, and work towards common financial goals? Try to incorporate at least two positive money habits into your life as a couple – this will help you stop fighting over money in your relationship.
What do you think of these tips on fighting over money? I welcome your comments!