April 24, 2017
If you ever find yourself squabbling with your partner over money, you’re not alone. Money (or the lack of it) is the number one cause for romantic disagreements. But why?
It’s because we all see money very differently, and we all behave around it very differently. For example, one of you may feel it’s okay to splash out while the other person feels you can’t afford it. One of you is being ‘needlessly extravagant’ - the other ‘stingy’, or ‘tight’. Predictably, you both think you’re right. How can you resolve this conflict?
The first thing to do is recognise we’re all wired differently, and money means different things to different people. We’re all one of four ‘animal types’, and these four different archetypes are driven by very different things.
You can find out your animal type by taking our two-week financial life coaching course. The personality test is one of the first things we do with you. Go on, give it a go - you'll be surprised by how accurate it is.
LIONS love achievement! Hitting their goals and pushing themselves forward makes them happy. Lions are typically breadwinners - real go-getters.
OTTERS are fun-loving, carefree types. Otters are party animals, and love to have a good time - but they often don’t think ahead.
BEAVERS are focused, pragmatic and rational, Beavers crave a sense of security within their lives, and love routine.
LABRADORS are warm, loving, and generous - almost to a fault! Labradors often run the risk of giving too much of themselves to others.
The first step to beating money squabbles is successfully understanding yourself – what drives you, what frustrates you, your strengths and weaknesses. Now you’ve done our personality test, that’s one thing off your list.
Now - here’s the tricky part. Your other half is an animal, too. (No jokes, please.) In order to stop fighting about money, and learn to communicate sensibly and productively, you need to communicate with them in a way which showcases your strengths - and appeals to what they think is important in life.
It might sound sneaky – but all you’re doing is showing yourself in your best light, and using actions and ways of talking which will appeal to them. So, which animal are they?
You can spot someone’s character type easily. A quick and simple way of doing this is imagining them in a group of friends, as when people are together, their natural place in a social hierarchy is revealed. A lion will be leading the conversation and dominantly holding the group together – they’re natural figureheads. Labradors are loyal, friendly and somewhat passive; they’re keen to fit in and please the group.
Exuberant otters are the life and soul, they’ll be the ones buying everyone bar snacks and charming the pants off the target of their affections. Finally, conscientious, methodical beavers will be angling towards a quiet one-on-one with someone who they trust and feel comfortable with.
Now you’ve worked out their animal, tweak your behaviours to get the best results. Here’s a trial run to get you started.
You want to buy a new car - the old one is on its last legs. You have your eye on a new one, but it’s a bit expensive - however, you have your heart set on it! Here’s how to tailor your approach for your partner, no matter what their animal type.
LION: Come on, this is a GORGEOUS model. And look at all the little extras - leather seats, Bluetooth, even hands-free parking! Our friends will go green with envy. We’ll look so cool in it!
OTTER: We are going to have so much fun in this car. Just think of all the trips to the beach we can make? Or to see our friends? We can drive to France and take that roadtrip you’ve always wanted to go on!
BEAVER: It’s really fuel-efficient, and it’s just had an MOT. It’s worth paying a little bit extra for comfort, security and safety, isn’t it?
LABRADOR: This car would make me so happy! You know I always felt a bit embarrassed in the old one - this one would make me feel super-safe and really comfortable.
Finally, to recap, here’s a handy checklist to go through if you’d like to blitz those money niggles for once and for all!
Recognise your own attitude to money (Take our two-week life coaching taster to do the personality test!)
Understand your partner may well have a different viewpoint
Discover their ‘animal type’ by imagining them in their group of friends. You’ll soon twig which one they are
Tailor your communication in a way which will appeal to them
Keep talking, calmly and clearly, until you find a win for both of you!