Financial Planning is a feminist issue

Mark Wahlberg has donated his reshoot earnings of 1.5 million to the Time’s Up fund in Michelle William’s name. What a beautiful gesture. It got me thinking. A lot. In this age of striving for pay equity why was Michelle paid $1,000 and Mark paid $1.5 million? Michelle said she valued the reason for the reshoot so was comfortable with that quantity of payment. I completely agree that it’s fantastic that they reshot parts of the movie to replace Kevin Spacey’s role. But I also wonder… how many times are we, as women, making decisions for the ‘greater good’ and potentially undervaluing our time, expertise and contribution as individuals? Let’s face it, all these smaller decisions add up substantially over our lifetimes. 

Here’s our top tips for finding your way with money, as a woman:

Think about tomorrow

You might be at the stage where you are fit, healthy and have full capacity to work. That’s a beautiful stage for building your career or business and generating a great income. But what’s around the corner? Could raising a family be on the cards one day? Might you have the responsibility to care for your parents or a family member in the future? Things change and unpredictable things come up so don’t think of your current earning capacity as an indicator of the future. The smart thing to do is to create a financial buffer so you have extra funds in the event that your situation changes. It’s about consistently putting money aside for the future so you have options down the track, whatever that is.

Build yourself up

Do whatever you can to work smarter. That could be upskilling so you work more effectively and get more done or produce a higher quality of work. It could be researching your position and role playing a salary review or pricing conversation so you come across confident and focused rather that nervous AF. It might be taking a moment to consider your dream job or client and then making a plan, literally writing down a step by step plan, on how to secure it. It could be getting your financial house in order so you feel focused. Or, building on your financial expertise so you feel confident when you are making financial decisions. Whatever it is, your future self will thank you for it because the beauty of the compound factor is that you will see the ripple effect of that positive step in a magnitude of ways.

Be smart, strategic even

You’ve got dreams and goals but is there a better way to do it? Take some time to really think it out. Is there an option that is financially better for you? Things like extended travel and starting businesses can make financial hits to your cash flow as well as your long term financial position. Is there a way you can do those things and still feel like overall you are moving in the direction you want? If you explore out of the box solutions you might come up with something that gives you the best of both worlds. 

Me, myself and I

If financial security is important to you then keep investing in your skills and work relationships. It’s the long-term play to make sure you enjoy what you do, get to spend your time working with great people and are rewarded for your hard work. It helps you remain relevant and able to produce a good income, in any stage of life.

Know what’s right for you

Some couples share money. Some do not. Different strokes for different folks. Over time financial decisions come up – moving in together, purchasing furniture, cars or even property, traveling together, making investments, establishing and building businesses, it could even be something like having expensive hobbies. Commitments that may even take months or years (or lifetimes) to pay off. Couples who share money should make financial decisions together, as a team. Let’s just say that life is unpredictable and unexpected things happen.  Make sure every, and we’re talking EVERY, financial decision you make is something that you are comfortable with. Also make sure it is a commitment that can afford to cover if circumstances change and you’re left with the repayments, solo. You need to trust in your decision-making ability, if you don’t think you know enough now then ask more questions and do more research so you feel informed and confident before you commit to anything. Take the time to make decisions so they are considered and in line with your knowledge and intuition. 

Ironically, Michelle and Mark’s movie is called “All the money in the world”, if this news story wants wasn’t waiting for a financial planning spin then I don’t know what is. Being smart with your money ensures you don’t get stuck anywhere – in a city, job, business or relationship, that you don’t want. It also means you can gift your hard-earned dollars to well-deserving charities yourself. 

This article was originally written for The Collective Hub

Chelsea Murphy