How To Strengthen Your Relationship Through Better Financial Communication
Do The "Money Dump"
A "money dump" is a process we've developed to help couples identify financial concerns, uncover hidden challenges that make money an issue in your relationship, and find ways to move forward together. Start yours by getting a sheet of paper—you'll each need one—and dividing it down the middle. On one side, write "pros," on the other, "cons." Then follow these steps:
D: Do it by yourself. Find a time when you can be alone, and lay out your financial strengths as a couple and any concerns you have. This only works if you are totally honest, so make your lists separately.
U: Understand the financial pros and cons in your relationship. Even if your financial life seems bleak, there have to be some pros. If you both have secure jobs, then that's a pro. If you are able to pay your rent or your mortgage, then that's another pro. If you worry about your retirement savings, then that's a con. Think about your financial life, and assess what's working and what isn't.
M: Meet together. Start your conversation by reading your "pros" lists. This will get you off to a positive start.
P: Pick which "cons" to tackle. Choose two cons that you can focus on for the next six months. By intentionally addressing these areas of financial stress, you get them out in the open and start dealing with them. Bringing these problems into the light of day and working together to solve them will help stop money fights before they begin.
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