How to build your financial support system
Women tend to be less confident than men when it comes to money, with a recent US Bank study revealing that 55% of women are confident in their ability to manage their finances, compared to 60% of men. One way to build confidence is to find a support group that can help you learn more about financial topics you don’t know, act as a sounding board when making complex financial decisions, and challenge your limiting beliefs about money.
In this “Financially Savvy Woman” column, we chat with Vanessa N. Martinez, a wealth management professional who is about to launch Self-powered network, a holistic, community-based approach to helping women manage their finances. Here, she explains how women can find or start a financial support group and why these groups can have such an impact.
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How can women find or start a financial support group?
First, they need to identify what they are looking for. Is he trying to make a confirmation of what they have going on? Or do you really need a mentor or the help of a network that gives you these guiding tools to build a plan? I think once you’ve identified the band you really need, it’s time to create or find.
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If you’re an extrovert, you can network with your friends and invite someone more knowledgeable in the field to provide direction. It’s really about learning from each other. The other side is finding a community. There are so many groups (that offer) complementary calls, newsletters or blogs that you could read. I would definitely say you need to start with this because it will give you an idea of what this network is really going to offer.
What kind of support can you expect from these communities?
The main groups that exist are for financial literacy or financial education, where they tell you how to budget, how to start investing, how to grow your money.
My sister and I are building something that’s a little more than that. The way we grew up, the community and the environment in which we find ourselves give us an idea of who we are today, what we know and what we miss. What I think should exist is more of the wellness element. What is your relationship with money? And what are the psychological barriers that hold you back? It’s more about how. ‘How do I do that? I know what to do, but how? And I believe those small groups are what help to identify your personal obstacles.
Why is it so important for women to have this kind of support?
The lack of confidence we have in large groups is what keeps us really quiet. As women who are trying to acquire knowledge, we will say, “I don’t understand this, but I don’t want to raise my hand. I don’t want to get up because then I’m going to be singled out. But in a smaller group, and in a group of supportive people who are in the same boat of wanting to help each other, that’s what I believe gives that sense of relief and will allow you to dig a little deeper.
Another (factor is that) there is a bias that women are risk averse. The truth is that it is more that we are “risk aware”. We are not afraid to take action. We just want to make sure these are informed decisions. And I believe these groups help build that knowledge, which then gives us the confidence to make good decisions.
How often should women meet with a financial support group?
It depends on where you are. If you need a little more support, joining a group at least once a month would be great. and, if you’re a bit more advanced, then I’d say quarterly or annually. As life progresses, we have to make adjustments.
GOBankingRates wants to empower women to take control of their finances. According to the latest statistics, women hold $72 billion in private wealth – but fewer women than men consider themselves to be in “good” or “excellent” financial shape. Women are less likely to invest and are more likely to have debt, and women are still paid less than men overall. Our “Financially Savvy Woman” The column will explore the reasons for these inequalities and provide solutions to change them. We believe financial equality starts with financial literacy, which is why we provide tools and guidance for women, by women, to take control of their money and help them live richer lives.
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