We’re all for breaking taboos here at Female Invest, so why not tackle two in one badass evening?! The recent Money & Relationships event was a perfect opportunity to join the Female Invest community and a panel of experts to talk about the complexities of managing your finances and aligning your money beliefs with a partner.
During the evening, we set up a self-love wall, encouraging attendees to anonymously be open, honest and add what they love about themselves. Being vulnerable in front of others is really tough, but in the presence of the empowering Female Invest community, we got to see what self-love really means when considering money and relationships.
Here are the five key takeaways.
Having pride in what others are doing
The most common note was about being proud of what other people are doing with “Every single one of us is strong for being here tonight” and “Good job for choosing to be here today”. This is the massive pro of a self-love wall - others can read anonymous notes and interpret them for their own situations.
It’s well documented that peer support groups have a hugely positive effect for people recovering from a mental health illness or addiction. Supporting one another to get to financial goals is also a life-long commitment where being part of a community encourages progression. Which is why we’re committed to building a strong community at Female Invest, and something we’re hugely proud of achieving.
These events are suitable for all genders, and one man who attended with his partner wrote “I want to learn more about finances so that my girlfriend won’t have to worry about our financial stability”. Doing right by others is what drives many of us, and educating yourself on a topic which stresses your partner or friend can give us the strength to make the issue seem more manageable. Knowledge really is power!
Looking ahead and aiming for goals
Women empowering women has always been a key theme of Female Invest, and some notes specifically addressed the reader; “You are amazing, no matter what life has in store, keep going,” “Keep going until you get where you want to be,” and “Do something today your future self will thank you for” were excellent notes left on the self-love wall.
The last one is something many will have thought about, whether it be making the bed in the morning to saving into a pension. Feeling an innate responsibility for the happiness of future you drives some interesting behaviours but can also dip into guilt for not doing more in the past. It’s a fine line, and although it’s important to plan for future you, present you shouldn’t suffer uncontrollably. Goals are important, but enjoying life now is a necessity.
“The best day to start was yesterday, and the second best day is today”.
A few notes from the self-love wall read that it’s never too late to start. Ask any of the Female Invest Co-founders what their one piece of advice is about investing, and the answer is always “the best day to start was yesterday, and the second best day is today”. It’s never too late to begin your investing journey, get your finances in order or even have a career change - your happiness is key! So even if you’re feeling like you’ve not always had future you in mind, you’ve still got time to make them proud now.
We’ve got money on our minds
The self-love wall was a perfect space to park some reflective financial thoughts, and the community came through:
“Here to learn and increase my financial IQ”
“I love that women can learn from each other”
“It’s scary to start investing but you can do it”
“I love that I have a F*** You account”
One that sparked a few conversations was “I love that I put myself out there today with a job interview - keeping financial options open”. So many of us feel locked in a job, but the idea of putting ourselves out there for an interview is overwhelming, especially when imposter syndrome kicks in.
Not everyone is a naturally gifted salesperson and talking about our own achievements is a tough skill to learn, but we can all relate to this scenario. Having financial goals and knowing our self-worth go hand-in-hand.
Self-belief is queen
Recognising how far you’ve come is as important as achieving a target. Looking after your financial, physical and mental wellbeing has never been more essential and the community reminded us to believe in ourselves. A favourite note was “I love that I always have my back. Thank you (me) for validating my feelings,” which reminds us to practise self-appreciation unashamedly.
Putting yourself in scenarios you’ve not experienced before is something Female Invest pushes for, from learning about a complicated topic to going to an event on your own (we hold plenty of those).
Around 80% of attendees to our events come on their own, which is a real credit to how empowered we make one another feel. Another note read “Proud of myself and everyone pushing through their comfort zones,” which is exactly how taking control of your financial future can feel like.
“Don’t compromise on your beliefs - emotionally as well as financially” was also well received as we may have been in a situation, or know someone who has, where we’ve felt the need to be smaller for someone else. Being around people who raise you up and celebrate you is more important than ever, and leads to a truly authentic life. And if there’s one thing we advocate for at Female Invest, it’s celebrating each other’s wins.
It’s down to me, myself and I
The Money & Relationships event wasn’t just for those coupled up - we had tips for people in all sorts of relationships, communities and those living the single life. When the UK’s single tax (how much you pay for things when living on your own instead of in a couple) stands at £860, it can take its toll and impact our wellbeing heavily.
The two best notes on the self-love wall for our single attendees read “The only person you have to like for the rest of your life is you,” and “If you are newly single, this is the perfect opportunity to start a new relationship where you have money conversations with no judgement.” When research shows that the main sources of conflict between couples are centred around money, it’s important to not only have your own finances in order, but be open to talking about money going forwards.
A final thought…
The whole purpose of the self-love wall was to not only give people a space to be honest, but to also show a mirror to us all, and make us really face the challenges we feel as a community. Seeing something written out and physically on paper is powerful, and we can relate to these post-it notes added by people we think have it all together.
My personal favourite notes were two sat directly next to each other. One said “A little cry never hurt anyone. Feel it out.” and the second had an arrow pointing to the first with “Preach!” written. Two strangers connecting and recognising each other’s vulnerabilities is what really makes the Female Invest community. That's why we're here - that's why Female Invest exists.