Managing money properly is important for everyone, but women in particular.
As women, we're often taught that it's greedy to want more than we already have, or to want more money than we need.
This creates guilty feelings and awkwardness around money, prevents us from talking openly about it, and even makes us feel inclined to deal with it less, either by giving control of our finances to someone else or by sticking our heads in the sand and trying to ignore it.
But it's so important that we do know how to manage our money, so we don't end up in a sticky situation.
If you don't know your stuff when it comes to your finances, you're giving away your independence, and if you don't have a handle on your bills, you could be literally costing yourself money in interest and late payment fees.
A lot of women say "oh, my boyfriend/husband/dad/business partner manages the money stuff" - how on earth can you be okay with that? Don't give control of something so important to someone else because you're scared or can't be bothered to do the work. Only you know what's best for you, and what if something happens to that person and they can no longer sort everything out for you?
The ability for women to earn our own money is still pretty new in the grand scheme of things, so it's understandable that we might feel insecure about dealing with it. But we have to overcome the fear of getting it wrong, and simply learn what we need to know and do.
The first step I'd recommend taking is to find out how much money you have coming in, how much is going out and where your money is going. By doing this, you can gain clarity on how you can manage your money in a way that benefits you.
Here are some things to look out for:
Are you paying any bills late and incurring late payment fees? Set reminders to pay them, or set up a direct debit so they come out of your account automatically.
Do you have any recurring payments for things you don't need or use? Get rid.
If you're making more money than you use, are you putting it in a savings or pension account?
Are you putting part of your business income aside for tax (I would suggest 20-40% depending on which tax band you fall into)?
Are there any payments you don't recognise? Find out what they are.
Find out what your credit score is and how you can improve it. I use ClearScore, which is free and gives you tips each month on how you can increase your score (not affiliated, I just really love ClearScore).
Being ignorant about money isn't cute. Knowing how to manage your finances and look after yourself is powerful.
Being in control of your money will give you the freedom to live your happiest life and have a secure future as you'll be prepared for any bumps in the road.
It's true that money doesn't buy happiness, but it buys independence and freedom. And as women, we need to be in control of those things.
It’s time to swap money stress for financial empowerment.
The Independent Girls Collective is a members-only platform to help smart women like you to take control of their finances and feel good about money.
As a member, you’ll get new courses, resources, live masterclasses and 1:1 coaching every month to help you manage your finances and provide the support you need to build a successful, fulfilling business that allows you to live the life you desire, as well as access to our supportive community of creative female entrepreneurs.