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Self-Worth: The connection between money and relationships

Written by: Dora Bralo

Once we recognize we can get what we deserve, we understand that nothing less will suffice.

“Some women break up with their boyfriends after this workshop” Ladies Get Paid founder Claire Wasserman remarks in her salary negotiation class. What would seem like a random comment is rooted in a profound truth. It would make sense as once we recognize we can get what we deserve, we understand nothing less will suffice.

This simple statement was also the catalyst in my interest in the connection between money and relationships. Both are tied to our sense of self-worth. Don’t take it from me, though. Harvard's Grant and Glueck 79-year-long (and still ongoing) study has established that fulfilling and loving relationships are the bedrock of future success in other areas of our lives, including our finances. On a personal level, this has translated in different ways.

While dealing with financial insecurity, I showed up as much more anxious in my interactions. Plus, I had the insistent, intense guilt of not being productive. With consistent money flowing my way, I’m more at ease and at peace. Financial stability begets emotional stability. The moments where I’ve felt like the richest woman is not when I’ve had the most money in my account but through life-changing experiences. It’s been the sweet simple moments I share with loved ones that makes me feel on top of the world.

I’ve also become an avid investor for the last two years. Interestingly, it has shifted in my mindset on other things, especially surrounding dating and relationships. Most notably being okay with rotational dating. I came across this concept through dating expert Sami Wunder. She explains one is meant to date several men (with emphasis on personal connection) until one of them initiates a conversation on commitment. This mirrors the sound advice to invest in multiple assets and/or stocks in order to alleviate risk (a.k.a, diversifying your portfolio).

It makes sense to explore options and evaluate them thoroughly, particularly while searching for lifelong partnership. Marriage is, after all, the greatest emotional investment. As Sami notes, it also helps mitigate the risk of getting hung-up on one person. As an old soul, I love the idea of being courted. There is nothing sexier than a man who regularly pursues me. This is because I truly value consistency. It’s what is needed to grow both a relationship and wealth long-term. Being a woman of relentless ambition, I go after what I want without hesitation. I imagine the right man will do the same - especially when it comes to me.

Once we are settled in our romantic relationships, money still determines how content we are in them. Interestingly, many of us are terrified to broach the subject to begin with. As reported by Personal Capital, nearly 4 out of 10 (39%) adults avoid talking about money with a romantic partner altogether. Yet, couples who regularly chat about finances are better-off in their relationships than those who don’t. Ones who discuss money at least once per week described their relationship as “extremely happy” (TD Bank Love & Money Study from June 2015).

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Excerpt from Self-Worth: The connection between money and relationships written by Dora Bralo inside Issue 13 · RELATE Special Edition · April 2022

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