Thursday, January 19, 2012

Women, Take Control of Your Cash!

I recently wrote an update about our financial journey. As I have blogged about before, I think transparency in finances is really important. It gives us more knowledge and more education for our own financial decisions, which only gives us more power. Money is like fire—a very important and useful tool, but when it’s out of control, it can be very destructive.

The Huffington Post cited a survey posed specifically at women. Seventy-six percent of the survey respondents feel out of control with their money. Ouch! That’s a lot of big, destructive fires raging.

I feel quite in control right now and it is the BEST FEELING EVER. I prefer this feeling to the feeling of a new pair of boots or a new expensive toy. I get a high off this feeling. I no longer feel left out because I don’t own a flat screen TV. I am constantly stoked by my financial control and progress.

According to the article, people make six to ten financial decisions every day. That’s six to ten opportunities to stoke the raging fire or six to ten opportunities to feel in control. My high school economics class taught me how to write a check, how interest accumulates, how the stock market works, and how much the teacher really liked football (it seems like high school coaches always teach economics or history, right?).

I didn’t really learn the ins and outs of daily expenses. I didn’t learn it in college either. My parents gave me a fighting chance, but I am not sure they always felt in control of their finances either.

So I am fighting for control. I am fighting to spread knowledge so others can get control too. Especially women.

This article about women and money had some really interesting facts about how women’s financial needs are different than men’s. Let me paraphrase a few.
  • Women live longer than men, so they need TWENTY PERCENT more money for their golden years.
  • On average, women earn 25% less than men. 
  • Because of time taken off to care for children and ailing parents, women take off approximately 11 years more from work than men. 
  • Because women work less and earn less, their social security benefits are about half of men’s.
  • Almost 1 in 4 women are broke within two months of a husband passing away.
  • Over 75% of all women will be widowed. The average age of becoming a widow? 56.
  • Eighty-seven percent of poverty-stricken elderly are women.

I was shocked by these statistics. When it comes to finances, women have an uphill battle. It’s seems scary, but knowledge is power. It’s the truth, and just because you ignore doesn’t make it go away. The best you can do is learn the truth, educate yourself, and grab a fire extinguisher and take control. Money is power—make sure it’s in your hands.

Normally, I kind of roll my eyes when someone has seven different blogs for every aspect of their life. I roll it all into this one. But I've thought about creating one strictly about finances. What do you think? Would you be interested in something like that? 


Mom on the Go said...

I'm with you. I remember learning how to write a check and balance a checkbook, but a lot of things were and are not taught in school. I am doing my best to teach my kids and as they get older, there will be a big lesson about their credit score and how important it is to them. I would love to read your financial blog if you start one!

Jewls said...

Totally interested! I decided today (while on the tredmill) that our economic crisis must correspond to our obesity epidemic. Weird huh? But when I'm working out I can think much more clearly, recognize my blessings, and not get caught up in the " I want it NOW!" mentality.

Now I'm off to read that article..thanks for sharing!

Kim said...

I definitely would be.

Meagan said...

We have had a man in our ward die recently and his wife is fairly young and widowed and I can't stop thinking about what I would do if my husband died somehow.

Amy said...

I love how you roll everything together in your blog, but if you started a financial one, I would read that, too! :)


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