We hear so much about the desire for women to achieve financial freedom. Sounds good, doesn’t it? But what does financial freedom mean to you? Do any points in this list resonate with you?
- Is financial freedom about having more money in your bank account or investments than is enough to achieve your goals of living a purposeful and meaningful life?
- Does financial freedom mean being able to give to others generously?
- Does financial freedom mean having good saving habits?
- Is financial freedom about gaining the confidence to handle any expense no matter the sum or timing?
- Is financial freedom about building a nest egg to leave a legacy for your family?
- Does financial freedom mean having open communication with your spouse, kids and extended family, friends and/or business partner about financial issues?
- Is financial freedom about having an emergency fund that acts as a safety net?
- Is financial freedom about having extra cash to use to support a cause that is near and dear to you heart?
- Does financial freedom mean you have more income than your monthly expenses?
- Does financial freedom mean you have ZERO consumer debt?
- Does financial freedom mean ALL OF THE ABOVE?
3 Action Steps for Becoming a Financially Free Female
Regardless of what financial freedom means to you, there are 3 ACTION STEPS that a woman must take if she’s to become an F3 and Live Unstuck. The action steps include these:
Know Your Worth
If you’re to achieve financial freedom and become an F3, it’s imperative to know your financial worth.
Sallie Krawcheck, Co-Founder & CEO of Ellevest Financial recommends that as a female, you should calculate how much you are worth financially. Websites such as Hired, PayScale and GetRaised are great resources to get you started. Chances are you’re behind the 8 ball with respect to your finances just because you’re a female due to a gender pay gap. A gender pay gap happens for a myriad of reasons. Here are a few:
- A gender pay gap may exist because women don’t ask for more, either because they don’t know what to ask for or they are afraid to ask for more. For more on this phenomenon, check out the book Women Don’t Ask, and the authors’ website at Women Don’t Ask.com.
- A gender pay gap may exist for women who take career breaks to start a family or to provide caregiving to an ailing loved one.
- A gender pay gap may exist due to structural bias. We can all chant the statistic by heart that women earn only 78% of what men do. Less if we work in certain industries and less if we are women of color.
Analyze Your Disposable Time
When calculating your financial worth, also look at how you spend your disposable time. Follow me here for a second. Take your yearly income today and divide it by 2080 hours–this is your hourly paid financial worth. Then determine how you use your disposable time i.e. what you do with your time when you aren’t working or sleeping. What you say YES to either consciously or subconsciously during your disposable time will affect you financially as well. Do you use disposable time to do high-value activities or low-value activities such as chores and errands that you don’t enjoy and that have no financial incentive? Knowing your financial worth should help you decide how to best use your time if you’re to multiply your income. For instance, you may want to take a class to enhance or build new skillsets, read the latest career, money or business journals, or use your time for leisure designed to bring more focus into your life.
Do You Need a Pay Raise?
After calculating your financial worth, if your current monetary worth is low, ask yourself this: Do I need to value myself more and ask for a pay raise?There is a chance that the market won’t support an increase in your salary, though. What do you do then? In that case, it may be time to use some of your disposable time to retrain and obtain skills that the market is demanding due to a supply shortage.
Start on the path of discovering financial freedom by becoming an F3 with these three starting points:
- Know your worth.
- Look for ways to add value to your worth by using your disposable time well.
- Ask for a pay raise and always work on bettering yourself so you remain high in demand.