Money Advice for Women with Endometriosis
Let's start with the truth here: I am not a financial expert. In fact, I've not had any financial education at all, ever. And that's why I want to talk about money advice for women with endometriosis today.
Recently, I came clean on how difficult the past few years have been financially due to endometriosis. But after a long struggle, I'm taking my power back and becoming financially empowered. Money advice and financial education has a history of being not only male dominated, but also directed towards men. It's no wonder that so many of us find ourselves struggling with endo and having money troubles as a result. So, I've begun educating myself so that if I do need time out because of endo, or I need to change my life around due to the disease, I'm covered.
I wrote about my experience of this, and the tips I'm learning along the way in Endometriosis News. Head over to read my other columns or read this latest column on money advice for women with endometriosis below...
How To Feel Financially Empowered When Endometriosis Affects Your Work Life
Yesterday, I gave you the lowdown on my messy financial situation, which was in no small way thanks to endometriosis.
I’ve been taking steps to empower myself to get out of debt and also save a fund so that if I do need to take time off again for my health, I have at least a month’s worth of money set aside to do so.
First, let me say, a lot of the financial advice out there is for the wealthy and financially educated, so don’t get overwhelmed or feel guilty if you’re not making heaps of money, or the info doesn’t apply to you. Even though the individuals and companies I’ve listed below are great, sometimes I feel like even those guys have forgotten what it’s like to really struggle.
There are loads of resources out there, but I’m going to start with what’s been working for me.
‘You Are a Badass at Making Money’
By Jen Sincero, this is one of my favorite books to go to when I’m freaking out about money. It’s based on practicality, psychology, and universal energy — so there’s something for everyone.
I bought it when I first went freelance. I was terrified because even though I wanted to run my own show, I basically was forced to because I could no longer work a “normal” job with my levels of anxiety and fatigue. So, I had to quickly get on top of my fears and limiting beliefs regarding money.
I see it in myself time and time again. I block opportunities to welcome money in my life because of learned behaviors and beliefs, and I think the most important work that Jen’s book does is help you identify the relationship between money and your self-imposed limitations.
There are exercises in every part of the book, and I have to admit, every time I work on these, I see progress — often in the form of new clients or a new opportunity. It’s integral to taking my headspace out of scarcity and into a mindset of abundance and gratitude — and that’s a much better place to operate from.
If you need a bit more support than a book, Jen has an online course you can access here.
You Need A Budget
You Need A Budget (YNAB) is a computer and mobile app that helps you manage your money, get out of debt, and save more. To me, it’s not just about the credit card debt, it’s about really understanding how to manage money and getting financially savvy.
YNAB’s app is mainly made for U.S. and Canadian users, as you can sync up your app with U.S. and Canadian banks and the currency is in dollars. If you’re using the software for a PC or Mac rather than the mobile app, there is a way to import your bank details. I haven’t tried this yet because it’s actually a new discovery for me, but what I do use is their podcast.
The YNAB podcast has single-handedly helped me create a budget plan for my debt and has helped me prioritize what to spend money on and what to save for. It’s not always easy and I’m still tweaking, but that’s one of YANB’s four rules: “Roll with the punches,” meaning, your budget is adaptable so sometimes you need to change it when “life happens.” Each episode is short and digestible, so it’s a nice way to learn without getting overwhelmed.
You can also access free online classes and read their books: “You Need a Budget” and “The Debt Consolidation Myth.”
I’ve always wanted to see my money in segregated sections while also seeing what’s happening to it in real time. I found that most of the standard banks in the United Kingdom don’t do this, but now Starling has come along.
Starling is an online-only bank you access through an app. I see what I’m spending on a daily basis, I can set goals, and I can separate my money.
There are a few glitches with the system as it’s still new, so my direct debits and payments go in and out via my main bank account. I use my Starling card for groceries and day-to-day expenses.
Strictly speaking, the goal section is for savings, but I like to create areas for each week and to divide my money up according to my budget. That way I can see how much I have left to spend every week in real time and I’m less likely to go over. It also means I don’t have to do the math every time I log in!
These types of banks and apps are popping up the world over, so see what’s available in your country!