By Lindi Monyae
Generally speaking, and according to the Cambridge Dictionary, a mindset is defined as a set of established beliefs, attitudes and opinions that a person adopts about themselves, issues or life in general. Most of us don't really take the time to know much about our mindsets and how this influences our behaviours and subsequent reality. Why is this important? How we view our lives and how we make sense of it has long lasting effects on us, but we don't interrogate these closely. It is dangerous to be blind to the mindset that we have about finances. Our financial mindset leads to our financial realities.
Most women are often too busy thinking about putting food on the table, creating careers, looking after families and others to be able to create time to think and reflect on the financial decisions we make and whether they serve our greater financial goals and dreams. We make financial decisions based on current needs and sometimes impulse, and maybe even to financially soothe ourselves as a coping mechanism. Others choose to even leave those decisions to partners and spouses in the hope that they will make the right financial decisions on their behalf. There are a group of women who are very aware of their financial mindsets and have learnt that being deliberate around financial decisions start with our mindsets. What better way to practice self-care than to meaningfully know your financial needs and deliberately work towards them? Taking full accountability for your financial health.
There are no perfect recipes here nor full proof solutions however, we can all start the journey and learn and grow as we move through it. Importantly, when things go wrong, we should be able to start afresh, self-correct and move forward. Here are my few reflections on my financial mindset journey:
- As a person and woman, I deserve to have a healthy financial life, no matter what my background and circumstances are.
- I need to think about my financial goals and plan towards achieving them.
- I don't need to know everything about all things finance, I can reach out to an adviser, financial experts, literature and trusted websites to empower myself.
- It is OK to have setbacks in my financial goals, but I should always strive to move forward and not give up on them.
- I must make it a practice to review my finances and get professional advice on my risk, savings and investment needs.
- There is nothing wrong with rewarding myself with what I like, love or want as long as it is planned and not on impulse.
I am sure that, as you start your own financial journey, you will find more lessons relevant to you and your life. A positive and deliberate financial mindset is important, and it could be the change you have been looking for. As we celebrate women's month, please reflect on your mindsets, keeping in mind that self-care tops our needs and financial freedom is worth seeking no matter what situation we are facing right now.
Lindi Monyae is an Executive: Emerging Consumer Market at Liberty