What were your first experiences with money?
Both of my parents died at 48 years of age and it quickly became important to me to be financially independent so I could create options for my future and obtain financial security. I started working at 15 and was living on my own at 17. From the start earning money and the empowerment it gave me to make choices in my life energized me. I looked at earning money as a way “to make my world bigger.”
What were the key messages around money that your family instilled in you?
The messages were not explicitly about money. They were about working hard, getting an education, being thankful for what you have, living modestly and within your means and taking care of your family = all of which have financial implications.
What is your current relationship with money like?
I still value the sense of independence that financial security and money brings and feel I have managed money fairly well over my life but honestly worry about money way too much. A day does not go by where I am not calculating numbers in my head or sitting in front of a computer to make sure I have enough money for educating my children and a secure retirement. I wish I could lighten up a bit in this regard!