4 Ways My Marriage Changed The Way I See Money

Couple managing finances


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April 21, 2024 at 12:18PM UTC

One of the benefits of getting married is that it is a union between two people with different backgrounds and perspectives of life. 

My husband and I are both from New York, but we grew up very differently. I grew up in Manhattan and I was fortunate to have a weekly allowance which I used without regard for developing healthy spending and saving habits. My husband grew up in Hollis, Queens. From a fairly young age, he was too accustomed to thinking about money and how to make it last.

Since we met as freshmen at Penn State, we have been teaching each other as much as possible. And I am deeply grateful that my hubby has taught me the following four money habits. Now I know...

1. Needs triumph wants.

Kahlil knows quite intimately how much I love shopping. Amazon has a very special place in my heart for holidays, birthdays and every other shopping opportunity I can create. With the option to order things so quickly, it is important to create a spending rule you will stick to. Kahlil taught me to ask myself one question before I buy anything. Before clicking the Buy Now button, you must ask yourself: "Do I want this or do I need this?” When I stop to ask myself this simple question, I can reign in my spending habits by prioritizing my needs over my wants.    

2. Diversification is key.

Growing up, I wasn’t exposed to extensive financial advice. I learned about the low advantage opportunities like creating a savings account or opening a C.D. with a bank. Thankfully, Kahlil opened me to the world of the stock market and creating passive income opportunities for yourself. Yes, you should have an account with a bank, but that alone isn’t going to cut it. If you aren’t exploring ways to diversify how you make money and invest it, you are doing an injustice to yourself and your wallet.  

3. Be reasonable.

Whenever I shop without asking myself the previous question or shop without a reason in mind, I usually regret the damage incurred. Why? Like everything else in life, shopping must be done with the following considerations: 

  • Can you afford to buy it? 

  • Is this a purchase based on a need or a want? 

  • Is this purchase going to be something you agree with 6 months from when you purchased it? 

  • Is this purchase for you or someone else? 

As Kahlil and I plan for our future, we are even more focused on making individual and joint money decisions that are reasonable and beneficial to us both now and 20 years from now. 

4. Ignorance is no excuse.

It is 2019 and it is inexcusable to use ignorance as an excuse for making poor or ill-advised money decisions. If you want to change your financial landscape, it is up to YOU to do something about it. 

No matter what age you are, learning is the key to personal and professional development. Hopefully you have a partner like mine who encourages you to make choices that will benefit you for many years to come. 

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Natasha Nurse started Dressing Room 8 to provide a web-based resource where women can gain personal and professional empowerment through her fashion and lifestyle focused blog. Dressing Room 8 helps women learn how to think with clarity, dress with confidence, and live with purpose. She is the Lifestyle Editor for Plus Model Magazine and she co-hosts a podcast with her husband called WokeNFree.  Follow Natasha on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and YouTube

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