Monday, August 5, 2013

Book "Home Finances for Couples". Extract from Chapter 3. "Values to understand and the right ways to talk about money with your loved one"

I plan to publish my book "HOME FINANCES for COUPLES. 
Resolve Money Problems in Marriage and Learn Easy Steps to manage Family Budget"
on August 20th, 2013.

At this blog you can taste pieces that are ready. 

Here is the extract from Chapter 3. "Values to understand and the right ways to talk about money with your loved one".



...Recommendations For Men

1. Women value income dynamics. 

Look at two income trails for the next three years. The first one is $50,000-$50,000-$50,000 per year, the second is $45,000-$50,000-$55,000. The total is the same: $150,000. Technically, you can invest the extra $5,000 on the first year and end up having more. Now, guess what most women choose when seeing those figures? 

What you earn now is not the only thing that’s important. Before your family reaches financial freedom, you need to show progress every year and the amount of effort put forth. Be honest, and say what you are doing to increase your income. What professional training have you taken? Do you have an optimistic plan for next year’s earnings? Are there any plans for the next three years?

2. SSS

It doesn’t stand for Social Security System, but you are close. Instead, it’s Stability, Safety and Security. Your loved one wants to be sure that the bills will be paid, and the Kids’ expenses will be covered, no matter what.

This is usually not a big issue in families with two breadwinners. Combined incomes certainly make the expenses much more manageable.

But, if you are an entrepreneur, that changes everything. You have to take into consideration the big picture of your life plus your family’s needs when starting a business venture, as you are entering a big risk zone.

Families with only one breadwinner often face this problem, as well. Share the big picture with your partner. If external circumstances are bad, share it, but show a positive side of events and prove that you are working to improve the situation (which I hope you really are).

Here, you could learn from my own mistakes. This is what happened to me: There were two months in 2013 when my company was going through hard times. We were losing clients, letting people go and even delaying salary payments. A situation like that is enormous pressure for the company’s CFO. I was sharing my feelings and thoughts with my partner, describing the situation, and I probably sounded far from optimistic. That certainly created an atmosphere of uncertainty.

As I focused on what was happening in the company, I was not able to assure my wife what I was planning to do to get out of that rut. I did not point out that the new clients and sales leads were of higher quality, and, also, finally, we started to produce our own software products. And, what’s more is that my personal income was growing as we were becoming more efficient!

The other important thing is to establish a family Emergency Fund, which is an amount equal to about three months of your total household expenses. Guys, I know that thoughts about emergency-fund money sitting in a low-interest savings account, or your drawer, might not sound appealing to you, but look at it as a “peace of mind” investment for your loved one (& you!).

3. Men have to earn more than women.

This is a controversial statement, but I would still like to talk about it. You might call me “old school,” but, looking at my life and the happy marriages around, I do endorse the above statement regarding young families and families in debt. 
As a matter of fact, there is a May 2013 study called, “Gender Identity and Relative Income within Households” (from nder.org), which states, “Couples where the wife earns more than the husband are less satisfied with their marriage and are more likely to divorce.” Even a strong and financially successful woman wants to be weak sometimes, and you are the one to grant her those minutes.

Sure, gender roles are evolving and becoming more sophisticated, but we still go back to our traditional roles, at times. Our traditional roles have been ingrained in our genetic makeup for so long that men still have the caveman-hunter instincts and the women have the homemaker instincts.

Recommendations For Women

1. One basic expectation of men that has never changed since the hunter-gatherer society is praise for the meat he brings home. If the results are good, a man expects, at least, admiration.

What if “good” is still not enough? You shouldn’t say that directly and harshly, under any circumstances. Look for a workaround plan. Find special moments to show financial needs. Agree on some specific plans. Show underfinanced categories, if plans are not met.

2. Efforts, with no results are a failure in a corporation. As a result, employees don’t get promotions or get fired. But, wait a minute, your relationship is not a pure business partnership. There are feelings and emotions involved!

The worst thing you can say to your husband is, “You’re such a loser. I should never have married you.” The wonderful words that will show your trust and support are, “I married you because I put faith in you. I know you will make it work.”

The greatest leaders inspire, instead of blaming. Act as the home spiritual leader during hard times. He needs your love, care and support, as much as you do in hard times. Most of all, he wants you to believe in him. 

3. It’s not only about What you say, but rather How you say it. The place, tone of voice, language, eye contact, the way you dressed, a time of the day, his current mood—all of those matter, indeed. I hope that after a certain period of time of living with your husband, you can configure those parameters right. Just, please remember this: Never demand anything, it should always sound like asking about his intentions.

Moreover, find the magic key to your soulmate. This can be either sitting on his lap or cooking his favorite dish served in a relaxing atmosphere. Be cautious with that special key; it is only used for important issues. You don’t want to risk the locks being changed.   

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