Every person has a distinct way of thinking about and dealing with money, your Money Personality. Unfortunately money causes tension in almost every marriage, especially over time. Probably because a day doesn’t go by without a decision to be made about money – home-brewed coffee or a latte on-the-go, lunch out or brown bag, new shoes or money for college. Your Money Personality impacts almost every decision you make. In a relationship, differing Money Personalities can be the difference between being on the same page about money matters and having it be a constant source of conflict. There are 5 Money Personalities™: Saver, Spender, Risk Taker, Security Seeker, and Flyer, and each person has a Primary and Secondary Money Personality.
Take our Money Personality Assessment, and then hand the mouse to your spouse to find out theirs. Most of us assume our spouse thinks about money the way we do, but often opposites attract. But don’t despair, the more you learn about your Money Personalities the sooner you’ll see eye-to-eye on your day-to-day spending.
Are you a Risk Taker? Are you married to one?
For Risk Takers, the thrill of a money challenge isn’t the possibility for a huge payout, it comes from taking the risk in the first place. Even if they never hit it big, Risk Takers never give up on following that rush they get from trying out a new idea, even if it costs them everything. It’s just how they’re wired. You’re a Risk Taker if you:
- Are a conceptual thinker. Risk Takers aren’t worried about details. They don’t get hung up on the “how” of an idea. Instead, they get a bead on something – a business opportunity, an investment option, a real estate deal – and they move. Fast.
- Get excited by possibility. Risk Takers get more excited about the idea of something than the thing itself. By the time the deal plays out and they’ve got their return, they’ve moved on to the next big idea.
- Love finding the next adventure. For Risk Takers, no idea is too far out, no risk too big. Their sense of adventure takes over and they want in.
- Listen to your gut. More than conventional wisdom, a Risk Taker trusts her intuition. If a deal doesn’t feel right, she won’t do it. But if something strikes her, she’s on it.
- Aren’t afraid to make decisions. Risk Takers don’t waste time when it comes to money. They make a decision and make it fast. That can be a real plus when there are important money matters on the line.
There are also challenges to this Money Personality. If you’re a Risk Taker, you need to be aware that you can be:
- Vulnerable. Risk Takers are often the victims of cons. The thrill of the deal and the desire for wealth can make for a toxic combination in the Risk Taker. Because this kind of loss can be such a blow, the Risk Taker might try to hide the loss from his partner by making more high-risk deals, shifting money around, even gambling in an effort to recoup the lost money.
- Blinded by possibility. When a Risk Taker gets a hold of an idea, reason has left the building, and with it go concern for other people’s feelings, attention to details, and long-range planning.
- Easily resented. Even if a Risk Taker is in a relationship with another Risk Taker, the quick decisions, the leveraging of assets, can end with two people who aren’t thrilled. When a decision pays off, everyone’s happy, but all it takes is one bum deal to create a rift of resentment.
- Impatient. The Risk Taker’s decisiveness can cause her to lose patience with people who don’t sign on to her big ideas as quickly as she’d like. They make decisions without consulting the people those decisions impact most – their partners.
- Insensitive. Risk Takers hate feeling hemmed in by other people, so rather than work for compromise, they charge ahead and deal with the relational fallout later. And when the Risk Taker’s partner isn’t on board with the decision, there is always relational fallout.
A Risk Taker can be a great partner because she is always thinking about the future and finding ways to make it better financially. The challenge for the Risk Taker is to keep her partner involved in financial decisions and be willing to say “no” to a deal.
Make It Happen!
Scott and Bethany Palmer
The Money Couple
Money Huddle Tip: If one of you is a Spender, take some time to talk about the impact this Money Personality has on your relationship. What are the strengths the Spender brings? What are some of the challenges?
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