Today we will learn how to talk about money at a difficult time.
Talking about money is hard, especially when everything is no longer okay. Everyone knows that there are many things you can do by talking. But why is it so difficult?
In my last guest post, I described how crippling shame it felt at the moment the decision on my bankruptcy had come and I knew it was just hours when “everyone gets to know”. Shame was felt all over her body. For a moment, I was sure that nothing would ever be the same again.
And maybe not, and well so. Extreme experiences also teach you to deal with easier times. There are hard feelings associated with money, whether it is a lot or a little money. It is a good idea to reflect on your approach to money and wealth at regular intervals, regardless of your financial situation. Unfortunately, it often only stops at your money ratio when everything is no longer in order.
On top of that, I don’t regret the fact that things went the way they went: bankruptcy came, bankruptcy went, there was debt and that’s where we go from here. I regret not opening my mouth. Shame prevented me from speaking and seeking advice. Now I am ashamed that I gave shame to prevent me from seeking help.
Money is being talked about more openly all the time. The more often you hear the money talk, the easier it is for yourself to take part in the debate. Each of us bears the responsibility for what kind of money discussion is going on in our inner circle. Is it worth asking yourself, for my part, do I create a safe money talk culture?
It is good to think about how money is discussed in your close circle and how you participate in the discussion. The debate can also be seemingly open: If money is only talked about as a measure of wealth, and the more it is talked about, of course, the threshold to open one’s mouth when things go badly increases.
In any case, it is difficult to talk about financial difficulties. At worst, it feels like a completely impossible idea. I know it.
What did I imagine? That my family, my friends, my spouse, everyone would just leave me? Would you bark upright and dump on the street? En. Would you be angry? Perhaps. Shame blurs the mind. My feelings and thoughts work against my own best, and I let it happen. Of course, I knew that escaping the situation and not speaking would not go far. Still, I did so because, blinded by shame, I thought I was protecting both myself and my loved ones. In the end, it hurt everyone the most.
5 tips: How to take the money for granted when everything is no longer okay:
- Admit the situation honestly to yourself. This is the hardest part. Once you have admitted the situation to yourself, it will be easier to admit it to others as well.
- Look for objects of identification. The media is full of survival stories that can be painful to read in the worst of times of need. Don’t compare yourself to them, but look for the belief that you will survive (because you will!).
- Talk. This is at least as difficult a point as the first. Sometimes it’s easier to start talking to a loved one who isn’t the closest of them all. Your loved ones are not blind: no matter how you covered up your situation, your loved ones know or at least guess already.
- Find solutions. It becomes easier to talk about a difficult situation when you have thought of some ways or means to solve the situation. Feel free to ask for help and advice from outside: for example, from a bank, debt counselor, or Guarantee Fund.
- Think actively about life after a difficult period. Calculate when you get your debt set off and think about that moment: how does it feel and then what do you do?