A money therapist? Does that sound like a relationship therapist or a counsellor of some description? I often think we can spend far too much time obessing over money, yet I am finding more and more people are exploring the idea of seeking money therapists, as they might seek couples relationship counselling.
A few reasons come to mind:
- We worry about losing what we have (even if we have multiple millions)
- We constantly agonise about not having enough and count every penny
- We compare ourselves to our friends and siblings
- We feel guilt about what we haven’t earned and justify every cost
- We identify ourselves by it – frugal, wealthy or too pure to deal with it
- We are intimidated by it
- And we self-sabotage
An all this monologue takes place in our own little heads. When couples talk about it, they are not only having that same monologue but it becomes a dialogue. One that takes on a whole other dimension of power-play, control and blame to various degrees depending on personalities.
In the seeming serenity of my office I have seen it all – from tears to secret bank accounts and mutual blaming.
When I work with a client, I aim to understand not only what their goals are but what their attitudes are about money in their couple, what types of discussions and arguments they may have and what may keep them up at night.
I then drilldown into the facts:
- your employment & investment income
- your expenses – mortgage, school, travel
- your debt – how much, against what, what rate
- your super – performance, fees, asset allocation
- your investments – potential return & risks
I analyse, compare and calculate different scenarios until, ultimately, I come up with a financial structure to meet your goals and reduce your stress.
However, while a clear financial plan will go a long way to make this happen, I am finding that there is an element missing. And that is one of looking at the relationship we have with money the same way we may look at our relationships with our parteners. I want my clients to go all the way!
I have come up with a plan! Introducing Monica…
Monica is a qualified psychotherapist and couples counsellor who will be working with all my clients to improve their relationship to money. She has been counselling couples, families and people for 16 years and has a particular interest in helping people improve their relationship to finances. In her experience, unhelpful relationships with money and finances can be the source of great stress, affect people’s identity and self-esteem. In couples it can be the source of conflict or something that is avoided altogether even, at times, be the source of unintended and unhelpful power dynamics in relationships leading to unhappiness and even divorce.
Working together with Monica as a team, I believe my clients will not only have a sound financial structure but they will have a healthy relationship with money, seeing it as a structural and necessary part to living and not the end goal. And so I am going the extra mile and offering all my clients a free session with a gorgeous psychotherapist.
And so far, the response to this initiative has been overwhelmingly positive. If you would like to discuss it with me in further detail, please get in touch.
Please share your thoughts and comments below and on Facebook.
Marisa Hoffenberg, BCom, CFA, DFP
t: 0416 538 227