This week, Maggie sits down again with financial therapist, Lindsay Bryan-Podvin, to talk about how breadwinning women can feel more confident about their financial success.
Are you a breadwinning woman in your family? Do you struggle with feeling powerful and confident about your finances, no matter how far you’ve come? This episode is for you!
Learn more about Lindsay’s Boundless program for couples
Order Lindsay’s book, The Financial Anxiety Solution.
Lindsay’s Instagram Page
Lindsay’s YouTube Channel
Lindsay’s free Facebook group for couples
Learn how to talk about money with your partner
Statement Cards: celebrating women’s ambitions and milestones beyond marriage and motherhood.
Lindsay Bryan-Podvin is the first financial therapist in Michigan; she combines financial literacy with the emotional and psychological side of money. With a professional history in mental health care, she found a greater love working at the intersection of mental health and money. It’s her mission to open up a dialogue with clients to talk about their money beyond bookkeeping. She hopes all of her financial therapy clients understand the basics of money, but also feel damn good about how their money is working for them. Lindsay practices financial therapy full time at Grove Emotional Health Collaborative in Ann Arbor. Off the clock, she can be found playing with her dog, Birdie, or scheming her next getaway with her husband.
To learn more about Maggie and her coaching and speaking services, visit www.maggiegermano.com.
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Maggie Germano (00:00):
Hey there and welcome to the money circle podcast. My name is Maggie Germano and I am your host. Don’t forget to rate, review and subscribe in your podcasting app so that more people hear about this podcast and listen, we’re in Apple podcasts, Google podcasts, PocketCasts, Stitcher, and Spotify. This week’s episode is brought to you by Stitcher premium. Listen to some of your favorite shows. Ad-free was Stitcher premium plus. You can get access to Stitcher originals like the neighborhood listen and groceries. Stitcher premium is only $4.99 a month or $34.99 a year, but if you use the code moneycircle, you can get your first month for free. Go to stitcher.com/premium to sign up today. This week I’m talking to financial therapists, Lindsay Bryan-Podvin, about why it is so important for women to step into their financial power. We’re specifically talking about women who are the breadwinners in their family.
Maggie Germano (01:01):
We talked about Lindsay’s new program called boundless, which is for heterosexual couples where the woman is the breadwinner. We talked about the impacts of being uncomfortable with women being the breadwinner and we talked about how women can really start feeling more confident and powerful in their financial situation and stopped downplaying their success. So I really loved this conversation, especially during women’s history month because we all could use more confidence and comfort in our capabilities and our accomplishments and I really hope you listen and take some of these tips away even if you are not currently the breadwinner in your relationship or even if you are not currently in a relationship. All of the advice that Lindsey gives is super important and I know you’ll enjoy it as much as I did. Welcome Lindsay. Thanks so much for being here again.
Lindsay B-P (02:03):
Oh yeah. I’m so glad to be back.
Maggie Germano (02:05):
I have been following everything that you’ve been doing so I knew that I had to have you back on to talk about something different.
Lindsay B-P (02:13):
Yeah, I know it has been a pretty wild ride since we last spoke, but really what I’ve learned about 2019 um, was that it was really all about just saying yes and seeing what happened. And because of me saying yes and listening to my followers, listening to my clients, I have kind of made a little pivot, which is what we’re going to talk about today.
Maggie Germano (02:36):
Yeah, that’s amazing. I’m so happy to hear that. Uh, so remind us of who you are and the work that you do.
Lindsay B-P (02:44):
Yeah, I am a financial therapist. Apparently there are only 50 of us in the country, so I know it’s pretty a pretty big deal. So I work mostly with couples around their emotions and psychology behind their, so while I do offer some financial coaching, the bulk of my work is really emotional and psychological. I’d say like 90% of my work falls into that category. So I use my skills as a trained therapist and also the cross training I’ve gotten in financial, social work to offer really specific and unique service to clients.
Maggie Germano (03:20):
That’s great. Yeah, and I think that that’s so important. I mean, you know that I’m a coach, so I take the um, the personal emotional side of money very seriously. So I love that there are people like you and the 49 others I guess in the world who are really getting into the deep psychology of it too. Cause I think that’s so important. Yeah, absolutely. And so how did you start working with couples in particular?
Lindsay B-P (03:50):
Yeah, well like I had said, it kind of just happened organically. So what had happened when I had started out as a financial therapist, I kind of hung up my internet shingle and said, I am happy to help you if you have mindset or emotional stressors about money. Here’s what I do. And in trickled people, mostly individuals. But what I also found was that a lot of the individuals were partnered or married and really quickly for those clients who are partnered or married, I realized we aren’t going to get anywhere if I don’t have both people in the room. Because what was happening was a person would come in and say, this is really only my issue. My partner has nothing to do with it. Or this is really their problem. I’m okay with my money. And that’s just not how it works for anybody who’s in a partnership. We can keep some things separate, but when it comes to a healthy relationship, I think one of the big foundational pieces of a healthy relationship is talking about money and being on the same page about money. So really quickly I shifted into couples and now my rule is if you’re partnered or married, I have to see you both.
Maggie Germano (04:59):
I love that because I think you’re absolutely right. Money touches everything in our lives. So the idea that anything that we’re struggling with personally with the money or that our partner is struggling with personally, the idea that that’s not going to touch the other person is very unrealistic. Yeah, absolutely. So when you talk about working with couples and that, you know, you’re mostly doing the therapy side of things, how does it usually work that you’re working with people? Like what does that usually look like
Lindsay B-P (05:31):
in terms of like if you were a fly on the wall? In my office?
Maggie Germano (05:35):
Yeah. And just kind of your approach, whether you know it is those in person sessions or if it’s courses, things like that.
Lindsay B-P (05:44):
Yeah. Yeah. So I had been doing mostly in person sessions, which I love to do and online sessions, which I also love to do in a two to one setting. So a couple and myself. And because there is such a shortage of financial therapists, my practice filled up really quickly and I have had a wait list since March of 2019 so because of that I thought that I would try something different and I am now venturing into the world of courses and when I say a course, I’m talking about a live course. So clients will join me online, but I am there because we also know statistically that a lot of people buy courses. They open up module one and then modules two through 12 sit in their inbox or in their Dropbox forever and not a lot of people finish them, which then can lead to this sense of failure and frustration of Oh my gosh, I spent this money on this course and now I’m not doing the thing.
Lindsay B-P (06:40):
And then I feel bad about it and so on and so forth. So I didn’t want my clients to have that. So my courses are all live. There are certainly things that they have to do on their own. You know, I’m going to provide a lot of worksheets and homework, but one of the things I find to be the most helpful is having that accountability. And one of the best ways to have accountability is saying, Hey, are you going to be there Saturday morning or Wednesday night? Don’t forget, I’m going to be seeing you. And the other piece about the course is that it is group-based. So everybody goes through in a cohort. So you’re starting and ending together. There was research that came out specifically about clients who were recovering from heart attacks, and I can’t remember the specific surgery, but I’m sure you can look it up.
Lindsay B-P (07:21):
I can’t remember if it was a stent or a full, you know, cardiovascular replacement. But they had two cohorts that they had followed. And one of them, they gave them the discharge paperwork of like, here’s how you need to take care of your new healthy heart step-by-step discharge packet. Pat you on the back, you’re good to go. Then for the other group, what they did was said, here’s your discharge packet and you’re going to meet with other people who’ve also had this surgery once a week. And no surprise the people who had peers to follow up with and hold them accountable and who were going through similar stressors and could offer their insight and support, they were 72% more likely to adhere to those behavioral changes that are necessary when you’re recovering from something like that. So that’s the other reason that I am doing group work. So I know that you had kind of asked like how it looks. So I hope, I hope that kind of helps to answer the way that I’m offering these groups.
Maggie Germano (08:15):
Oh yeah, that is really helpful. And, and I love the extra stories that you were telling around the accountability and the follow through with group coaching, you know, any kind of group work. Absolutely because I think how is that not so obvious, right? Like of course you’d be more likely to follow through if there’s other people doing it with you. But we don’t always think about it that way. And a lot of times, especially in our society, we kind of think we have to go through things alone and then if we’re not doing it by ourselves, then it’s not as legitimate. And I just, that makes everything so much harder.
Lindsay B-P (08:53):
Yeah. And and you, when it comes to money, talk about stigma around money and money management and money mindset, right? Like we, so many clients, the biggest question I get is like, well, am I doing this right? What are other people doing? How does so-and-so doing it? Right? We have nothing to compare it to because everybody keeps their personal finances so hidden. And I think everybody should decide what feels like a good level of disclosure for them. I don’t think that everybody needs to be posting their salary and posting their financial goals, but if that feels good to you, great. And at the same time I think that having a group saying like, Oh we ran into that exact same problem when we tried to create a budget or all we found that exact same feeling happened when just one of us tried to manage our money. Having that can be so normalizing and validating.
Maggie Germano (09:43):
I completely agree. And that’s one of the reasons I created my money circle group where we’re meeting in person every month to talk about different financial topics. And it really gives people that opportunity to see that they’re not the only one who’s struggling with something. and that’s why I love doing like speaking and workshops and just anything in person where one person could ask a question, you see the entire crowd like nodding their heads and it’s like, okay, see this is what we were going for.
Lindsay B-P (10:08):
Yes. Anytime we can uncover the shame or the stigma or the fear, we are moving in the right direction. And yeah, I love your, your money circle groups. I wish I was in your neck of the woods a lot of times cause I see you posting. I’m like, Oh, that’s so cool that Maggie’s offering those.
Maggie Germano (10:25):
Thank you so much. Well I hopefully someday we’ll go on a tour and maybe I’ll stop where you are.
Lindsay B-P (10:31):
Oh my gosh. Yeah, come to Ann Arbor. I would also go to Detroit, Toronto or Chicago too, so, so keep that.
Maggie Germano (10:39):
It’s good. Um, great. So you’re talking about your new group program, so can you tell us a little bit more about what the focus is in that program?
Lindsay B-P (10:51):
Yeah, so again, this kind of just came to me organically. So the group focus, I, I have created a course called boundless and it is for heterosexual couples with breadwinning women specifically because that was another area that people tended to have a lot of hangups around. And I wanted to help these couples understand that they’re not alone going through navigating this new territory. I’d say all of my couples identify as feminists and at the same time still struggling with those internalized gender roles around being the person who’s bringing home more money and for the partner of the breadwinning woman, the person not being a quote unquote provider.
Maggie Germano (11:37):
Yeah. That. That’s something I’ve definitely heard before. And as a feminist myself too. It’s something where I’m like, have we not like gone beyond this? But I also kind of understand like that stuff is so ingrained in how we’re raised and how we think about ourselves. So also makes sense to me that it’s still something we’d struggle with. Um, what are some of the ways you’ve seen that kind of manifest in the couples you’ve worked with in the past?
Lindsay B-P (12:03):
Yeah, so it doesn’t usually come out that straightforward, right? It’s never, it’s maybe it’ll happen, but as of today when we are talking about this, nobody has come knocking on my door and said, hi, I’m a feminist. My partner and I identify as feminist and we both have a lot of internalized stigma around, you know, me out earning him or something like that. It usually sounds more like, you know, a woman saying, you know, I’m not old fashioned, but it just feels weird that he isn’t earning as much as I am or you know, I really want us to be strong, but I have to say that because I make more than him, it’s a huge barrier. Or even things like this, I’m not trying to be the breadwinner, it’s just the way that it happened. This wasn’t planned. So it usually doesn’t sound quite as bold as the way that I’m explaining it, but it comes up in those things and statistics back it up. Right? So, uh, 29% of married heterosexual couples, 29% of them are in relationships where she is earning more. And of that 29%, so almost a third, this is not like a small chunk of the population. Of that 29% only 38% of those couples say, yeah, we’re in a relationship where she earns more. So both men and women downplay the fact that she is earning more. Yeah. So I mean there’s are just like some numbers that back up how it feels. And looks to be in a relationship like this.
Maggie Germano (13:35):
That’s so sad and disappointing to me because I would assume I’m not currently the breadwinner in my relationship, but I would assume that if I was, that I had, you know, moved up in my career or grown my business to the point where I might feel very proud of that accomplishment that I was able to make. And, you know, I’m doing a great job at the work that I’m doing. And so that to then feel both personally embarrassed and like I want to hide how much money I’m earning or seeing my partner downplay my contribution to the family financially, that would be, I think, painful to me.
Lindsay B-P (14:18):
Yeah. Yeah. And it’s, it is so subconscious. Again, I don’t think people are going out there and saying and boldly lying and saying, Oh no, I’m not the breadwinner. It is subtle things like, Oh yeah, well I just happened to get this raise because, you know, so-and-so left the firm. It’s all these little subtleties of downplaying our success. Um, there, there’s a quote from somebody, it’s on my Instagram so I’ll, I’m sure we can figure out who it was. But it was a behavioral economist in Chicago who had done research and said that, you know, couples who have breadwinning women, they are comfortable when she brings home the bacon but they’re not comfortable when she brings home the filet mignon. Right. So we’re, we’re happy when she is out there making money and hustling but we’re not happy when she starts to out earn her husband.
Maggie Germano (15:10):
Huh. That’s so interesting. And do you have any ideas or, I mean maybe you’ve seen studies or gotten feedback from clients like why that is?
Lindsay B-P (15:25):
Oh, it’s so hard to know. The one why, I’m sure there are tons of reasons why. I think again, a lot of it is subconscious. The American dream of, you know, the white picket fence and 2.5 kids and a dog. What we aren’t often including in that American dream is that in this image it’s a man and a woman and he’s earning more. So there is a lot of that in it. I think there is a lot of masculinity tied up in earning money. So women don’t want to emasculate their man if they are out earning. So they take on more or they try and downplay it. And unfortunately breadwinning women report lower satisfaction in their marriages than those who have equal incomes or where he is making more. So this is, these are those little digs, right? I have a friend who had said she’s the breadwinner and she was out at like some holiday party cause we just got done with the big holiday party season and somebody said to her, Oh to him, Oh, must be so nice that you get to sit at home while she’s earning all the money or something like that.
Lindsay B-P (16:32):
And like would we ever say it if it was the other way around, would we ever say to a woman, Oh, must be nice to sit on the couch while your husband goes and makes money. No, we just, we wouldn’t. Or if we do like I haven’t heard it.
Maggie Germano (16:44):
Yeah. And that’s such a rude thing to say. And I feel like there’s a lot of assumptions around that too. And yeah, I mean, and it also relates to kind of how we talk about money in our society of like the jealousy or the perception of other people’s lives and then that jealousy that comes up around that where I’ve had, I’ve seen people even at money circle say things where, you know, one person, maybe they don’t have student loans because their parents had the money to be able to pay their student loans when they were in school. And someone else might say, wow, must be nice.
Lindsay B-P (17:19):
Must be nice. Right.
Maggie Germano (17:21):
Okay. Like obviously that’s coming from jealousy, right? Like I wish I had that. And so that could also just be the different way you respond to it. Like, Oh man, that’s so, that’s so great. That’s so lucky. I that would’ve, I would’ve loved to have that instead of, you know, some kind of accusation or some kind of negative comment because then I see people feel guilty about having those kinds of opportunities in their lives too.
Lindsay B-P (17:48):
Yes, exactly. That’s where I see a lot of it come in is that I am in an area where there are a lot of high income earners. I’m in Ann Arbor, Michigan. It’s a big university town. We have some of the highest percentages of people with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in the country and I was having women come in who were saying things like this who were saying things like, I feel guilty if when I go, you know, pay for something new. I feel guilty that I can afford to buy the new couch. I feel guilty that I can afford to send my kids to college and I’ve had my own issues. Right. I came from the world of social work where we were told you did not go into this field to make money. You are not in this because money matters to you. So I was inundated with that messaging.
Lindsay B-P (18:36):
Years ago I was working in a stub and I’m for me to buy a new car. My husband loves BMWs, loves them. He has this fascinating obsession with them. We’ve gone to Munich, Germany, we’ve gone to the car museum like it is a love for him and it is a total joy for him. He enjoys the engineering, he enjoys everything, right? So when it came time for me to buy a new car several years ago, he’s like, cool, I’ve got my eye on this Beamer. We’re going to get it for you and dammit if I did not almost throw up when it came time to buy that car, I literally sat down with my supervisor and I asked her, I’m like, do you think I can drive a BMW because I’m a social worker. Like literally whispering it like I was saying a dirty word. And of course she’s like, you can drive whatever car you want.
Lindsay B-P (19:29):
We get the car. I drive to work park in the back of the parking lot cause I’m still convinced that people are gonna like set the alarms off that I drove a BMW into work, come to work, almost sweating cause I’m so embarrassed that people might say something. And of course nobody says anything. And I’m like, wow, I really internalize this idea that in order to be a good woman, in order to be a good social worker, I shouldn’t have nice things. I shouldn’t care about brand names. That stuff shouldn’t matter to me. I had so internalized that having something brand name made me a bad person that I almost threw up. I was like sweating through my clothes with fear and shame and my story, I hear it all the time. I’m not alone.
Maggie Germano (20:14):
Yeah. Oh no, you’re absolutely not. And, and it’s so interesting because I think, I mean, and I work with a lot of people who are in the nonprofit field or government.
Lindsay B-P (20:23):
Yes, exactly. Given where you are. Yeah.
Maggie Germano (20:28):
But like I almost think that the idea that a social worker, so someone who has to probably a lot of debt from going to grad school and is going into the field they’re going into because they want to help people and improve the world. The idea that they all shows also should be like financially suffering. So in order to do and people going into nonprofit or government work because again, they want to like do something meaningful that they also have to make less money and suffer financially. And that’s just how it is. Like I fundamentally reject that idea and that premise and that’s why I think like you working in the field that you’re working in and doing what you can to still support yourself and earn enough money to be able to do what you want to do. And I feel very strongly about wanting to grow my business and increase my revenue so that I’m allowed to live the life that I want to live and contribute to my household in that kind of way. And I think everyone should have the opportunity to do that. That it’s, you shouldn’t be suffering or left behind because you’re trying to do good in the world.
Lindsay B-P (21:35):
Oh, I know. I know. Preach because it is so obnoxious. This idea of you have to be pious and poor in order to be good. And I also fundamentally disagree with that. I firmly believe that we have to be, have our financial houses in order, and then when we give back, we can truly give from a place of generosity and comfort instead of giving back. You know, crumbs. I’d rather give so much more and I can only give more when I have fully taken care of myself financially. And when it comes to social work, there are no other mid-level healthcare providers that are getting that same messaging. You know what I mean? Nobody else with a master’s degree in a healthcare related field is being told they’re not allowed to earn money. You know, no physician’s assistants, no nurse practitioners, nobody else with a master’s level degree in healthcare is being told they shouldn’t earn money.
Maggie Germano (22:31):
That is a very good point. And something that I think about every once in a when, and we’re getting slightly off topic, but we’ll go back in a second.
Lindsay B-P (22:40):
Maggie Germano (22:44):
Um, but when people at perhaps like for example, ask me to do something for free, like they want me to volunteer a speaking event or a workshop or even a coaching session and they kind of get frustrated that I charge for the business that I run. I get frustrated and I think about how there are so many other people out there who like a doctor or a dentist or whoever else, and I usually is a health care person that I’m thinking of where you can never expect that you could go to that person and be like, but you’re going to do this one for free. Right. Because you’re doing it out of the goodness of your heart. Right,
Lindsay B-P (23:20):
right, right. And even for you, Maggie, a financial planner, right. They wouldn’t expect a financial planner to talk to them for free. Yeah. Right. It’s, it’s ridiculous. So no, I hear you and I cheer you on charge for all those, pick your brain sessions. I started doing that a few months ago, like right. Practicing what I preach and I’m never going back.
Maggie Germano (23:42):
That’s great. I’ll have to talk to you more about that offline. Yeah. So getting back to kind of the theme of this episode, which is for me about helping women step into their power when it comes to their money. So this episode is going to come out during women’s history month. And so I really wanted to focus that around like women’s power and feminism and all of that. And so you’ve been talking a lot about this with your new group program and so I, that’s why I wanted to have you come talk about that. Um, so you talked a little bit, you started touching on a lot of the anxiety that I, that perhaps comes up for women around the embarrassment or like holding back on talking about being the breadwinner as well as the marital dissatisfaction, which is also upsetting to hear. Can you expand on that a little bit more? Like how this, how this kind of disconnect between women being the breadwinner and then also being okay with being the breadwinner, how that’s affecting women in a negative way?
Lindsay B-P (24:56):
Yeah, I mean the fancy term for this is a cognitive dissonance, right? There’s a distance between what you believe and how you behave. And so for women, I think first and foremost, just starting to say confidently, yeah, I am the breadwinner and if that word doesn’t resonate, fine, choose something else. But just starting to kind of stand in their truth can be helpful because you’re right that it negatively impacts us. We cannot be good feminists if we are downplaying our financial success. So in order for us to work towards financial parody in the workforce, in order for us to work towards, instead of it being 30% of households, having it be equal, right, of of households who are, have breadwinning women in order to work towards all those things that we say we believe in and we say we vote for, we have to first start saying in our households and in our communities and with and amongst our friends,
Maggie Germano (25:54):
I love that. And, and I agree with that so wholeheartedly. Especially just even talking about money in general. Like that can be the first step. Like talking about something you’re struggling with or just saying that you’re going to ask for a raise at work and just make that talk about money, be a little bit more natural for you. And you can start small and say, you know, Oh like I’m on a budget so I’m not, I can’t go out this week but like come over for dinner and just like starting really small and then building up to whether it is sharing your salary openly or talking about being the breadwinner and then, you know, just making that more and more consistent talking about it. Cause I think the more we do something, the easier it gets and the more natural it feels.
Lindsay B-P (26:42):
Maggie Germano (26:44):
that’s any habit the first time you try and change a habit, try and make a behavior change, try and work towards shifting your thoughts. It has to become habitual. Yeah, absolutely. So what are some of the ways that you recommend women start doing this? So whether it’s with the clients that you work with or just generally when you’re talking about it, what are some ways we can kind of get started with that?
Lindsay B-P (27:12):
Yeah. First is just noticing when it’s happening, right? So noticing when we are adding in those asterisks, when people ask us about our success or our careers or about our money instead. So first just noticing, Oh, somebody asked me how did I get to be a partner in this law firm? Oh, I’m noticing, I want to first throw in a disclosure that it’s because five people retired this year, right? So first just noticing what those instincts are is step one, noticing when you start to feel uncomfortable. Oh, when I put out my credit card to pay for dinner, I noticed, I wondered if people were looking at me. So first just noticing when you’re having those interactions and those thoughts that come up, then start to work towards sitting with those feelings so that you can work towards change. So in that becoming a partner in a law firm example, Oh, I’m noticing, I want to throw in this disclaimer.
Lindsay B-P (28:08):
Wow. Instead of throwing in that disclaimer, I’m going to see what happens when I don’t do it. Wow. I said, yeah, I did become a partner. I’ve been here for X number of years and I’m really happy to be where I am. Whoa. What did that feel? It feel like I was bragging. Did it feel really uncomfortable? Did I notice my face get hot? Same thing with the credit card. Oh, I’m noticing. I feel like, are people looking at me checking in with what would happen if I thought, worst case scenario, people are looking at me, can I handle people looking at me when I pick up the tab for dinner? Wow. Yes, I can. So first just noticing, then starting to implement those changes and then once you implement those changes and can start to stand in them, then you can start to encourage other women to do the same thing. So pointing out to your friend when you take her out and say, Oh my gosh, congrats on your promotion. When you notice her say, “Oh yeah, but it’s only because”, you can interrupt her with, “no, no, no, no, no, no. Like you’re allowed to be proud of your promotion.”
Maggie Germano (29:11):
Yeah. I think that that’s so important and I think that it’s like with anything that we’re struggling with, right, where we have to first notice and acknowledge what’s happening and that doesn’t mean that the feeling has to go away immediately. Like it’s, that’s not going to happen. It just noticing it means it’s not going to be gone. But that’s the first step in changing your behavior and then inherently changing your thought pattern.
Lindsay B-P (29:33):
Maggie Germano (29:35):
And I love the piece of advice of encouraging our friends to do the same because that’s something that I often do too, where, you know, I notice my friends kind of downplaying something that happened that was really great, whether it’s in their career or something else. And if I, especially if I see them talking to somebody else about it and downplaying it, I’ll like interrupt and be like, actually, she like worked really hard and got this amazing promotion and it’s so exciting. And she’s, she’s a badass and she’s going to kick ass there.
Lindsay B-P (30:05):
Maggie Germano (30:07):
And then see kind of the, the grudging acceptance of that too in them. And the more that that happens, I think the more willing we are just collectively to brag a little bit more, be honest about our success and encourage and support each other, which I think is so important.
Lindsay B-P (30:27):
Maggie Germano (30:29):
And then, yeah, I think you’ve shared some of this, but there’s also that, that new company from Stefanie O’Connell called statement cards where we’re celebrating women for achievements outside of marriage and babies and around like financial goals and career goals and things like that. And I’ve gotten a few of those already and sent those out to friends. So I think that’s another great way to support your friends.
Lindsay B-P (30:54):
Maggie Germano (30:56):
So, so it sounds like, you know, we’ve talked about how to start making a little bit of a change inside ourselves, how to encourage our friends. What kind of advice do you give within those heterosexual couples where there’s that cognitive dissonance with maybe your male partner feeling uncomfortable with your earnings?
Lindsay B-P (31:18):
Yeah, and what I often find is that it’s not usually him. It’s usually her that’s downplaying it. So when I have them both there, I often try and highlight, see how he isn’t downplaying it, see how he is cheering you on. He’s not feeling emasculated, um, with your success. So just kind of pointing out that she doesn’t have to protect him. Right. He’s a, he’s a big boy. Let’s, let’s hope that you have partnered with or ended up married to somebody who also has the same values as you. So first is acknowledging that and then for both people to continually cheer each other on. Another thing that I often recommend if, um, she is worried about his masculinity or if he is feeling emasculated is doing a, um, an assets audit, a nonfinancial assets audit. So literally jotting down which he, which, what each partner brings to that relationship that have nothing to do with money.
Lindsay B-P (32:19):
Oh my gosh. Well, he is so thoughtful. He packs my lunch every single day. He is so funny. There’s nobody that makes me almost pee my pants the way that he does. Right? So starting to acknowledge the strengths that we each contribute to a relationship that have nothing to do with money. Because I also think that that’s where we can get stuck, is that money, the only currency that matters in a relationship. And my belief is that money is a huge important thing in a relationship, but it is not the only thing there. We have to continually acknowledge and nurture other aspects of our relationship as well. So I often encourage couples to do that and do it continuously.
Maggie Germano (32:57):
Oh, I love that so much. And now I want to immediately do that when my husband gets home later.
Lindsay B-P (33:02):
Yeah. Yeah. And so I recommend you each do it separately. Write down your own assets and their assets, and then share with each other. I always think that can be really fun.
Maggie Germano (33:13):
I love that. And I feel like that can also just be a boost between you two where it’s like, Oh, I didn’t realize that you noticed that I did that, or I didn’t realize that you liked that so much about me. And it can just be a nice bonus of like feeling better about each other and, and having sharing some of those, you know, thoughts that maybe we’re not sharing on a day to day basis.
Lindsay B-P (33:38):
Maggie Germano (33:39):
And I definitely relate to the idea even, you know, like I said, we’re talking about breadwinners specifically, but as I said, I’m not currently the breadwinner in my family. And that’s something, especially as a financial coach and someone who talks about financial security with women, that’s something that I struggle with a little bit. And uh, so that’ll be a nice activity for me too, where it’s like, there is so much more and I know kind of intellectually that like there are lots of other things that I’m contributing and it’s not just about the actual numbers, but I do struggle with that sometimes. So I think that will be another helpful exercise.
Lindsay B-P (34:18):
Yeah. Oh, happy to help.
Maggie Germano (34:19):
Yeah. Thank you. Um, so related to kind of, I mean, so we’ve talked about the how to be kind of talking within the partnership and allowing yourself to um, not take care of the, of the male partner and worrying that maybe they’re feeling emasculated and things like that, which I think is a very important point that you made. Um, cause I think we don’t always give our partners enough credit sometimes with that and worrying that they’re feeling a certain way that maybe they’re not. Um, and we might not even be talking about that or asking them, are you actually feeling this way? Because we could give them this opportunity to completely just eliminated our fears around that. Absolutely. So when it comes to kind of the day to day management of money in the household, so say you know, when a woman is still the breadwinner and they do want to be stepping more into their power, what are some ways that you recommend kind of managing money as a partnership?
Lindsay B-P (35:23):
I recommend it exactly is that as a partnership, one of the biggest pieces of advice that I give to clients is to make sure that they’re managing their money together. And even if that means there’s mine, ours, there has to be an hour’s account. Otherwise you are chasing towards your goals in opposite directions. It’s like a tug of war, right? You’re not gonna win. You both need to be on the same page. And instead of saying things like, that’s my money, or that’s your money, it has to be our money. I fundamentally disagree with those ideas of like split the bills. 70 30 if somebody’s income is 70% and somebody whose income is 30% because you’re automatically creating a power dynamic that does not and should not exist in a healthy relationship. So that’s first thing is like you guys have to be on the same page. You have to be in it together and giving both people the equal say over what you guys do with your money. I want my couples to be able to say, okay, we love what our money can do for us in our marriage. Does that make sense?
Maggie Germano (36:32):
Oh, that makes complete sense. And the more that I’m doing this work and the more that I’m, uh, every once in a while working with couples, the more I agree with that because I’ve seen like when I first started my business, I was like, yeah, if someone feels very uncomfortable combining all of their money with their partner or any money with their partner, that’s fine. If that’s what works with that for them, like whatever, they don’t have to do it differently. But I keep meeting with people who are struggling with just what you were saying that like, no, this is my money and that’s your responsibility. You have to pay your money for that thing. And it causes a lot of additional tension within the relationship that I don’t think needs to be there. And yeah. And I also think, and I’ve seen it kind of remove that idea of partnership and remove that idea of family.
Maggie Germano (37:24):
And I’m specifically talking about people who are like married or lifetime partnered where you’re not just like dating. Right, right. And so I think that it’s kind of harmful to look at it in terms of like just yours in mind and getting really nitpicky about who pays for what and what was, whose responsibility and so yeah, the more and more I do this, the more I’m like, no, you need to at least have a pot of money that is for the family and look at things as the whole and that whole household rather than just splitting it up between you.
Lindsay B-P (37:58):
Maggie Germano (38:01):
So yeah. So how do you kind of guide people with that? Like have you had couples work with you where they did keep things really split and had a hard time kind of figuring out how to get comfortable with merging things together or thinking about things as a whole?
Lindsay B-P (38:16):
I tell my couples before I meet with them that that is my framework because I have seen so much tension and so much trouble when people keep things separate that I have learned anecdotally I can’t do that. I can’t work with a couple where they keep things separate because when you keep your bank account separate, you are on a path to keep everything else separate as well. And it just creates a climate where it’s easier to hide things, right? So it’s like why would you keep a dating app on your phone if you are seriously connected to somebody else? Right? It’s just like way too tempting. So by eliminating that first and foremost, um, and when it comes to couples bringing it together, I dig in a lot to why, and I know in therapy we are, we’re not really supposed to ask the why question.
Lindsay B-P (39:06):
We’re supposed to ask what, because why can be a little bit, um, challenging. It can bring up some defensiveness, but I ask why. Why is it important to you to keep your accounts separate? Why are you scared of merging your accounts? Why are you so adamant about separation in your marriage? And if they can’t answer that, if they can’t answer that in the way that I can hear there is a real true comfortable reason, then I really will say I can’t work with you. And there may be other financial therapists or coaches out there who are dedicated to that, but that’s not my area of expertise. I only will work if I know something’s going to work and I haven’t figured out a way to work with clients who keep their accounts separate. So I’m just really transparent with them about it. Like if that’s really important to you guys and into your marriage, great, but I’m not going to be your person.
Maggie Germano (39:59):
Hmm. And that’s great that you have made that distinction where you can confidently say like, if this is how you’re going to do it, if that works for you, that’s fine, but that’s not going to work for our work together.
Lindsay B-P (40:10):
Exactly. I almost always tell people like, I’m not for everyone and thank God because if I was able to help everybody, I would be doing a massive disservice because I wouldn’t firmly stand in the things that I believe in. So when I have a value and when I have things that I see are giving my clients results, I’m going to stand in that and that is just going to repel some people and that’s okay.
Maggie Germano (40:34):
Yeah. You can’t be the right thing for every person because there’s so many people out there. Yeah. Unless you already have a wait list. So how would you get anything else done? Exactly. Exactly. Maybe I need to narrow it down even more. Maggie. Um, so is there anything else around specifically women stepping into their financial power, their financial confidence? Any other general kind of tips or pieces of advice or just things that you want listeners to know about that?
Lindsay B-P (41:09):
I think going back to that cognitive dissonance piece, it’s really important for women to start to work towards behaving in the way that you believe that women should behave when it comes to standing in their strength around money. Just work towards that idea of that woman on the pedestal with that, you know, megaphone in her hand work towards that. And that doesn’t mean that you have to fully do that thing, but if you can work towards embodying some of those things that you cheer on, then do that. So I encourage women to think like, are you following Lizzo? Are you following Beyonce? Are you following Rihanna? Like what are the things that they are saying or doing that really resonate with you? I mean, more recently Jane Fonda has just been blowing my mind. I’m like, yes, woman, get it. So just working towards embodying pieces of women that you admire so that you can start to believe then and learn for yourself.
Maggie Germano (42:05):
I love that. So surrounding yourself with people that inspire you and act and, uh, exude the kind of confidence that you want to feel yourself.
Lindsay B-P (42:15):
Yes. I love that. The exuding confidence. I’m like, yeah, get that.
Maggie Germano (42:20):
Yeah. And I would add to that too, like making sure that you’re surrounding yourself with friends and other individuals who lift you up and encourage you and support you and don’t encourage you to kind of downplay yourself. So surrounding yourself with more people that are cheering you on regularly.
Lindsay B-P (42:36):
Maggie Germano (42:38):
And that can be tough too cause that’s something I’ve gone through over the last several years of like figuring out who are the actual friends that are kind of lifting me up and making me feel good versus making me question myself or kind of bringing me back down and making those distinctions and kind of shifting your energies to the people who are really boosting you can be painful and difficult. But I often think that it’s necessary as you’re kind of growing up and changing.
Lindsay B-P (43:04):
Maggie Germano (43:05):
Yeah. So is there anything else you would like to promote to listeners? I think you have a book coming out soon.
Lindsay B-P (43:13):
Oh yeah. So the book is widely available at this point in time. It is the financial anxiety solution and it is a, an interactive workbook based book. So you can take steps towards dialing down your financial anxiety and being really confident in the life that you lead. I have a bunch of freebies right now. So the best way you can get it is going to my website, mindmoneybalance.com/podcast and you will find a guide for bread-winning women to start the money conversation so people can check that out. There is, you know, my YouTube channel full of things. I recently held a two hour budgeting workshop for couples and it went so well that I was like, I’m just going to make this recording readily available. So that recording is available there if you’ve got two hours to set aside with your honey to get some budgeting stuff going.
Lindsay B-P (44:10):
So those are some great free options. And of course if somebody wants to join me in boundless, which is my six month group course, everything is live, you can check out my website there and find out how to apply for that. And I say apply because I really want to protect the group morale that is in, I want people in there who are ready, willing and able to take steps towards feeling empowered. I’m not going to take in people who are saying, I don’t want to do the work. I want you to do it for me or it’s so and so’s fault. I want people there who are ready to get a little bit uncomfortable and are willing to take this conversation to the next level.
Maggie Germano (44:51):
Oh, I love that. And I love that you’re being so specific about who is right for that course because I think it then it’ll be so much more useful for everyone who’s in it.
Lindsay B-P (45:01):
Maggie Germano (45:02):
Great. And you’re always giving out so much wonderful content, so I’ll be sure to be linking to all of the things you mentioned and more in the show notes.
Lindsay B-P (45:11):
Beautiful. Thanks so much Maggie.
Maggie Germano (45:13):
Of course. And so how can folks get in touch with you directly?
Lindsay B-P (45:17):
Yeah, so find me on Instagram @mindmoneybalance. I answer my DMS all the time. So if you have questions, go ahead and shoot me a message there. My website is mindmoneybalance.com. My YouTube channel is my full name, Lindsay Bryan-Podvin, and yeah, I hope to see and hear from everybody who’s listening to the show very soon.
Maggie Germano (45:39):
Okay. Thanks for tuning into the money circle podcast this week. Make sure that you rate, review and subscribe so that you never miss an episode. It might not seem all that important, but subscribing and rating actually helps to get the money, circle podcasts in other people’s ears. If you’d like to get more connected with money circle or with me, there are lots of ways you can do that. To join the free Facebook group, visit facebook.com/groups/moneycirclegroup. To stay informed of any upcoming events, subscribe to my weekly newsletter at maggiegermano.com/subscribe. If you’d like to join the virtual money circle membership group, visit Maggiegermano.podia.com/inner-circle. To learn more about my financial coaching services, my speaking and workshop offerings, or just to read my blog, visit Maggiegermano.com. You can also follow me on Instagram and Twitter @Maggie Germano. Thanks so much for listening.
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