Over the last several years I have observed that most families handle financial issues, from
planning to spending, by dictating, abdicating, or directing:
1.Dictating: "I control our income and all the spending.
I don't need anyone else to help."
Dictators temporally accomplish much, but they hurt many people along the way. Others are not collaborated with; they are merely used.
Lasting happiness will not come through this style.
2. Abdicating: "I don't like Math/numbers/ budgets/money, so my spouse will take care of it."
This is a total hands off approach and precludes the benefits of mutual wisdom. The quest for self-sufficiency must be a joint effort.
3. Directing: "What do you think? That's a good point. I hadn't thought of that."
A spouse listens, asks questions and involves others in the family
so an effective group decision is made.
Most people struggle with learning the director role. The concept of each person listening
to one person at a time is rare, but very effective. Two people committed to a mutual goal will consistently succeed.
Are you a dictator? Abdicator? Director? What type is your spouse?
What can you do to direct/ participate in money conversations instead of controlling or abdicating?
(Photo courtesy Wikipedia)