Music Mondays – Getting Married

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Somebody’s Getting Married

Last week I received an email from a client that I have been waiting for months to receive. The subject line was “I said yes!” and I can’t tell you how excited I was to read this. I felt a little like the Muppets in the video below, and I wanted to sing through the streets “somebody’s getting married.” Let me fill you in on my joy and enthusiasm.

My client who sent the email, we will call her Jill, started working with me about a year ago. She knew that she had to get her money organized, but just didn’t know where to begin. Not long after she got started on her plan, I received an email from her boyfriend at the time, we will call him Tom, and he inquired about getting his money organized as well.

Passion Gave Purpose

Jill quickly adjusted to her goals and made big strides immediately; while Tom took some time to adjust his behaviors. It was during Tom’s first quarter review that he revealed to me that he wanted to propose to Jill at some point. I felt like a giddy schoolgirl because I knew both of them well, and I really felt like they would make a great match.

I was not happy with Tom’s performance to goals, though, and shared with him that there was no way he could afford a ring if he didn’t get his sh&t together. For some reason, I think the motivation to propose to Jill gave Tom that extra push that he needed because not long after our meeting, I received an email from Jill telling me that she and Tom were eating in more and spending time out less. She joked that they were becoming boring home bodies, but secretly I think they were both happy as they watched their bank accounts grow. For me, I watched from the sidelines with pride as they worked together to help each other achieve their financial goals.

Purpose Gave Results

By Tom’s second quarter meeting, he was back on track and doing what he needed to, and he informed me that the ring purchase would be an imminent event. I then lectured him on not overspending on a ring and told him I would hate him forever if he spent more than $X on it. He had a larger budget in mind; however, I shared that he had a lot of life to live with Jill and they both have big plans and the more he spent for the ring, the less likely they were to achieve the other goals.

A month ago, Tom had his third quarter meeting with me and shared that he found the ring and would purchase it soon. He didn’t spend my budget number, but came in under his initial number, so he compromised. By this point, the secret was killing me. I didn’t know how much longer I could keep it in, which was why I was so excited I could sing when I receive Jill’s email last week.

A Couple that Saves Together…

Beyond the engagement, what I was more excited about was the fact that Jill was not just emailing me to tell me the good news, she was emailing me to schedule a joint meeting with she and Tom where we could discuss the wedding plans and future finances.

I work with a number of couples, and I see firsthand why money is the number one leading cause for divorce with clients. Money habits and behaviors can make or break a relationship, and when a couple is not on the same page, it leads to lots of fights and challenges. I have sat with couples where I knew they were headed for a break up and I have sat with couples that I knew would have staying power, and my biggest indicator is their money mindsets.

Stays Together

This is a couple that I know will have staying power. A year ago, they both had different financial challenges; however, they have worked together as a team to make smarter choices and help each other achieve personal money goals. They are now both financially more stable and understand the importance of working together on their money as evidenced by the request for a financial planning meeting a week after the engagement.

I look forward to helping them plan for their wedding financially and their life after that big day. I am so proud of how far they have come, and know that they each could not have done it without the support of the other. Only good things ahead for Jill and Tom!

 

Did you have marriage or relationship troubles over money? If not, why do you think money is not a problem in your relationship?

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Shannon is a financial planner who left a “traditional” financial services firm to start her own company, The Financial Gym, because she felt traditional financial services firms did not have the tools or resources to help people in their 20s and 30s who are starting out and trying to build assets while also managing debt. She realized that the key to long-term personal financial success is a commitment to financial fitness and making smart financial choices. Through her blog, Financially Blonde, her book, Train Your Way To Financial Fitness, her podcast, Martinis and Your Money and The Financial Gym, Shannon is committed to making financial fitness fun, easy and accessible for everyone.

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