Dealing with the financial aspect of divorce can be one of the scariest parts of the process. And there are so many reasons for that. It can be a “hot button” issue because of childhood experiences or one spouse may have been the one managing the family finances. Or the power differences in the relationship can make a spouse less confident. No matter what the reason, a Certified Divorce Coach can help you walk through the emotional process and refer you to other professionals when needed.
Divorce can make one feel like they will have to give something up. A lifestyle, a house, or being taken care of. That may be true in some situations. But divorce gives you is control. Control OVER your money when your divorce is complete. How you want to make/earn/save, and share/spend it will be up to you. It can be freeing! Truth be told, managing your finances is a lifelong exercise with a lot of learning about yourself along the way.
If you find the prospect of managing a budget daunting or overwhelming, taking the emotion our of budgeting may be helpful. Think of a budget as a positive thing in your life. You will learn about your likes and dislikes, and what things are worth to you in particular. Money is an expression of what is valuable to you. And scarcity can help finetune those values. Prioritize and let the less important things fall away.
So, how do you choose what to buy and when to buy it? Is the item “worth” buying?
Do you buy a bottle of water when you are thirsty or wait until you get home? Is it easier to run into a small, privately owned drug store to buy your favorite shampoo or deal with a more hectic experience shopping in a big box store? What is the tradeoff?
According to Wikipedia, “a brand is an overall experience of a customer that distinguishes an organization or product from its rivals in the eyes of the customer.” Is the brand of the product you are buying “worth it” the extra cost to you? Is it “worth” the money you would save if you bought a non-brand or lower branded product?
The bottom line is you can only buy items you can afford. In addition, the ability to delay gratification to wait for something you want is a muscle that needs to exercised again and again and again. You will enjoy and cherish your purchase so much more if you wait and save towards it.
One common drugstore mascara is bought every two seconds in the United States. That’s 40,000 sold every day! Yet, there are high priced mascaras that you can buy in a department or specialty cosmetic store. Are these higher priced mascaras “better”? Are they worth the extra cost?
We have all enjoyed getting a cup of coffee outside of our home. It is not just the coffee we enjoy the but the experience of the transaction and the flavors of specialty drink that may be hard to make at home. But now, many of the ingredients of these specialty drinks are widely available in our local supermarkets. How much could we save if we made coffee at home? Is the experience of going into a coffee shop worth the extra expense?
Thoughts about the future…
You don’t need to become a professional in the finance industry to successfully manage your own money. Just like you don’t need to become a lawyer to get divorced. A financial advisor can create a budget and invest for you. But find a Financial Advisor that truly listens to you and that you trust. It is a long-term relationship that can truly affect your present and your future. And if you are thinking of getting divorce or in the midst of one, look for a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA) to support you. A CDFA can create a budget for you and fill out your financial affidavit.
Enjoy the positive aspects of being knowledgeable and in control of your finances.
How you spend your time shows your priorities. Time and organization are the keys to financial freedom puzzle as are professionals to support you. Make your money part of your daily, monthly and yearly habits and watch your confidence grow and reap all of the associated rewards!