Here’s a simple exercise I do with my clients, whether they are single or married. Try it yourself. If you are married, do this separately from your spouse.
Set aside a few minutes for yourself (yes, you DO have time for this).
Take a piece of paper, and with a pencil divide your page into quadrants.
Label each quadrant: Upper left is “Life Priorities”, upper right is “Goals/Desires”, lower left is “Fears/Worries”, lower right is “Responsibilities”.
Fill in the quadrants—be totally honest with yourself. Write down what’s really inside you. Do not write down what you think others think you should be thinking!
Hello! You’ve just discovered what’s behind your money! Little known fact: Your worries/fears actually have a greater impact on your financial decisions than your aspirations or priorities. Now that you’ve actually identified your worries, you can better evaluate if what you are currently doing addresses those fears, or just masks them. Now that you’ve specified your life priorities, you can better evaluate if your financial decisions are being true to your higher self. It’s amazing what this little exercise can reveal. If you are married, share your results with your spouse. Now THAT can truly be a revelation! --Lois Russell
One more little known fact: When we fight over money…money is often not really the issue. The issues are goals, worries, priorities, responsibilities. Money is just the language we use to express that. When we understand what’s behind our money, we have one more tool for getting along better. Separate checking accounts help, too.