The Taboo of Money
Many people in well paying careers find that talking about money is a bit of a taboo subject for a few reasons, either they don’t want to come off as arrogant for being in a well paying career or they have spent most of their life learning about something specific and haven’t devoted the time necessary to understanding finance. Increasing your financial literacy can help remove the taboos surrounding money and can address both of these underlying reasons. If our goal is to be financially independent and live the life we desire, it will take knowledge and the ability to openly talk about how money fits into that equation. Let’s take a closer look into the reasons we don’t talk about money.
Reasons Money is Taboo
For those of you entering or working in the medical profession, it is very likely that you’ll find yourself making above the average income. While this doesn’t mean that financial issues disappear, it does make it harder to talk to someone about issues you may be having especially if they make less than you. This makes it harder for doctors and nurses to openly talk about money as there’s a perception of “If I was making that much money, I wouldn’t have any issues!” which is simply not true, they would have the same issues as you. However, this tends to keep medical professionals quiet, and when you keep quiet you don’t learn and improve your understanding of finance.
Another reason money is taboo is that many people feel guilty that they don’t understand their finances well enough or that they have issues with money at all. It can be tough to be making six figures and still not able to do everything you want to do. The fact is, the more you learn about money and your finances the more you’re able to see it as a tool, like a scalpel or a retractor, and put in the time necessary to use it properly.
Another common misconception is that you’re the only one who doesn’t know about finance, which is simply untrue. Whatever question you have or issue you’re going through I can guarantee that you’re not the first person nor will you be the last person with that concern. For those who are ashamed that you don’t know the difference between retirement plans, there are those who have simply heard of retirement plans and that’s as far as their knowledge extends. The important thing is that while we all start the journey from different places of knowledge, we all pursue the same goal of understanding more about our situations. So what’s the first step?
Talk About Finance and Money
The first step is just start talking about these issues with others. Maybe you want to seek out someone who works as an advisor and ask all the questions you have. Maybe you want to start out by asking coworkers and friends, and you’ll soon see that the issues you’re having or the questions you want to ask are very common. The important thing is that you start talking about it, and remove the taboos surrounding money. Only when we’re capable of having open and honest conversations about money can we remove any stigma about it and get down to doing meaningful work.
If you have questions or comments, please feel free to send me an email and I’d love to be helpful in whatever way I can. For those who want to get more familiar with the vocabulary used in the financial world, check out my Financial Literacy Friday blog posts to review the basic concepts.