Ladies, apparently there are a lot of us out there that don’t feel as confident about our finances as we could (and SHOULD!).  It seems many of us deflect this aspect of life onto partners or we are responsible for managing the finances but don’t always fully understand what we’re dealing with.  I know for a fact that that is, more often than not, me!  I would much prefer to hand off anything to do with money and finances to someone else.  The better option? Let’s instead empower ourselves to feel more financially confident!

Confidence is an inside job – Kim Kukulowicz, Vice-President of Marketing and Residential Sales, EQ Bank.

Last week, I attended an event that did just that: empowered and inspired all evening-long.  It was an event new to Vancouver called stnce, created by Kim Kukulowicz of EQ Bank, and hosted by some bada$$ women. stnce’s mission is to inspire women to confidently take ownership of all aspects of their lives, including their finances. I took notes all night to be able to share my takeaways with you all, as it was one of those evenings where you wish everyone you knew was hearing what you were hearing and feeling what you were feeling.

So, what 9 tips did I draw from the evening about how to feel and BECOME more financially confident?

9 Tips for Feeling More Financially Confident

1)    Ask questions

It seems basic enough, right?  If you don’t understand something, put your hand up and ask for clarification. BUT… how many of us actually ask the questions or wait for someone else to ask so that we can just listen for the answer? Asking questions can feel daunting, but it is the only way we can make 100% sure we’re understanding what is being explained.  I remember going into my bank for the first time to sign mortgage papers on my house.  I was by myself and kind of knew NOTHING about mortgages.  I probably asked at least 20 questions but I felt so empowered by the end of the meeting because it’s a big deal to know all about something that is such a big deal! To start out, ask people you feel comfortable with like family and friends and then just keep on asking those questions.

2)    Learn to be comfortable being uncomfortable

This ties in nicely with #1.  Sometimes we need to get a place of total discomfort before we recognize that we maybe DON’T know “it all.”  That’s OK.  Get comfortable with the idea that being uncomfortable in a situation is the moment right before some big learning happens.  Hover in that space a while because what comes next is information!

3)    Educate yourself

Listen to podcasts, attend events (like stnce, for example), take courses… whatever you can do to LEARN.  Knowledge is power, ladies.  We all have areas in life where we could use some help and the best way to help ourselves is to educate ourselves.  Because when we know more, we become more confident in that area.

4)    Seek out a financial advisor

Financial advisors know their sh… stuff and it’s their responsibility to help us stay responsible with our finances.  There’s no judging that goes on there.  If you think you must be in a situation worse than they’ve ever seen, you’re most likely incorrect.  Seeking out a financial advisor could be exactly what you need to get you (or keep you) on track and to help set you up successfully for present and future.

5)    Start DOING

I am the Queen of Procrastination. Trust me. I actually have to make myself believe that projects are due long before they are so that I don’t wait until the 11th hour. (And then I wait until the 11th hour to do them-sigh.) When it comes to finances though, NOW is the time to take charge of your situation.  You don’t know what the 11th hour holds for you and it makes so much more sense setting yourself up properly and lessening the mental load.  DO IT!

6)    Get a mentor/be a mentor

Find someone that really speaks your language when it comes to finances and then roll with them.  Ask them to impart alllll their wisdom so that you know so much that you, in turn, can become someone else’s mentor.  When I was an elementary school teacher, my favourite activity in class was getting the students to become an ‘expert’ on a certain topic and then buddy up and teach another student in the class who had become an expert in something different.  When you have to teach someone else, it forces you to be CERTAIN that you know what you’re talking about so as not to pass on false information.  Learn from someone who knows more than you and help others who don’t know (yet) what you do.

7)    Negotiate

Manjit Minhas, the keynote speaker at the stnce event in Vancouver said something that really resonated with me.  She said, “you don’t get what you deserve in life, you get what you negotiate”.  Mic. Drop.  Think about it for a minute.  I thought about it the entire drive home that night and am still thinking about it. There’s negotiation within families, relationships, work and even between you and yourself.  “Ok, I’m NOT going to buy these amazing shoes today, but I will when I land my next client”. Sound familiar? If you sit back and just let things happen to you, you won’t ever feel the confidence you deserve to feel when it comes to taking control of your finances and your life.

8)    Set goals

A very prominent childhood memory for me is that every New Year’s Eve, my parents would share with each other their short term and long term goals for their family, personal life, health and career.  They’d encourage my brother and I to do the same and it was a tradition I probably didn’t love as a teenager but can look back on now with admiration and fondness.  They did it every single year and we watched them succeed in love, work and life in general.  I recently sat down and wrote out some goals for myself.  They were goals for 2019, because they were BIG goals and it didn’t seem remotely possible to me that I could reach them in upcoming months. But then… BAM.  Within ONE MONTH, I reached a milestone goal for my business that I honestly wasn’t even sure I could reach but just wrote it down ‘in the hopes that…’.  Setting goals and holding yourself accountable is so important and, my goodness, do you ever feel confident when you can actually pull them off.

9)    Respect yourself… and others will respect you too

Look yourself in the mirror and tell yourself something you are really good at.  It might be cooking.  It might be brain surgery.  It doesn’t matter what it is just respect yourself for who you are and what you’re capable of.  Respect yourself because you choose kindness and see the good in people always.  Respect yourself because you’re doing this whole ‘life’ thing and you are doing it well.  Respect yourself and others will respect you too but, most importantly, confidence will radiate from the inside out.

To learn more about stnce, click HERE.

Thank you to EQ Bank for sponsoring this post.