Marriage and Money Tip #4: Your Words Are Clues
Communication is more than words. When you and your spouse sit down to talk about money, there is more coming out of your spouse—and yourself—than simply the vocabulary you’re using in the moment.
Anytime we discuss financial matters, we draw from a mixture of personality, culture, and experience.
Here’s how these three elements work.
Personality and Money
In the subject of money, personality is an individual’s desire for security or their willingness to risk.
Your personality will affect how you handle and engage with money, and your spouse’s personality will affect how they handle and engage with money. There are two different personalities involved here.
So you and your spouse approach financial matters from two slightly different perspectives. It’s important to understand this difference exists and to respect both personalities involved.
Culture and Money
Culture includes the way your family handles money, the way your community handles money, and maybe even the way your nation handles money.
These three cultures constantly feed us information, some of which is reliable and some of which is not.
Experiences With Money
Your experiences with money also play an important role in how you approach this topic with your spouse.
You and your spouse share certain financial experiences, of course, but even a shared experience can produce a different thought or sentiment within each person. When ten people experience the same event, they might end up with eleven opinions of what just happened!
You and your spouse interpret your shared experiences with money as individuals, which means those interpretations may be different.
Those three elements—personality differences, cultural differences, and experiential differences—can make a discussion about money quite thrilling! Two people need to come together and find a common vocabulary so they can communicate well around this potentially difficult subject.
Beliefs Are Always Stronger Than Skills
I have found that no matter how skilled a person may be with money, their skill level will always fall below their belief system. So when we’re trying to overcome money struggles or learn how to communicate about money with another person, we need to recognize the value and power of belief systems.
How can we start to deal with the belief system and not just the words?
The Key to Seeing Behind the Veil
As I’ve worked with people through my Financial Sozo ministry, I’ve discovered that communication occurs in three ways:
What we hear (the actual words being used)
What we feel
What we think (the internal “tapes” playing in our heads)
In this article, I want to focus on the first point: the “sounds” transferring back and forth from one spouse to another. If you listen carefully to the words you are saying and the words your spouse is saying, you can pick up clues about what is happening inside the two of you.
When we’re dealing with money, we role-play one of three characters: the victim, the villain (a powerful victim who wants to get even), or the hero.
The hero is obviously the role we want to play in our finances—but the victim and the villain are the roles (or mindsets) we hunt for as we seek truth and financial freedom.
We can recognize a mindset by the words being spoken. For instance, a victim says things like:
“I can’t do it.”
“I could never do that.”
“They did this to me.”
“If only they hadn’t done this to me.”
“Who do they think they are?”
“How come I don’t get the same breaks this other person gets?”
Those are some of the “noises” we need to listen for if we want to see through our words to get an inside look at our logic and why we think we’re having trouble.
For more information on money mindsets, check out Prosperous Soul Master Course: Volume 2. In this manual, I talk about the two ends of the spectrum with money: poverty and mammon. The victim and the villain.
What’s the Next Step?
When you recognize you’re dealing with a victim or villain mindset, you can “Financial Sozo” yourself out of lies and into truth. Here are a few free resources I offer that will help you:
If you feel you need additional support, you may want to schedule a Financial Sozo with me. Click here for more information.
Remember, our truth source is always the Word of God. It is the ancient foundation that can teach us how to think well about money.
Here is a simple prayer you can pray over yourself as you move forward:
Father God, I pray that the truth of Your gospel would sink deeply into my heart. Please empower me as a Prosperous Soul to emerge from a victim or villain mindset and become like Your Son, Jesus, the hero of the world.
God bless your Prosperous Soul.
This article is part 4 in a series about marriage and money. To read Stephen’s other articles in this series, click the links below:
For more information about Financial Sozo, click here.