A little over a year ago, I introduced many of my female clients, colleagues, and friends to the “Fearless Girl.” We shared it on International Women’s Day 2021 to reinforce our conversation about women and investing – Playing to our Strengths. The Fearless Girl is a bronze statue that stands on Broad Street across from the NYSE building in the financial district in Manhattan in New York City. Commissioned by State Street Global Advisors, she was created by artist Kristen Visbal to send a message about workplace gender diversity.
Two weeks ago, I met “her” again at a women’s conference in Richmond, VA. According to SSGA, this is the traveling version, but identical none-the-less. I was proud to strike the pose and demonstrate my confidence and fearlessness! But it also gave me pause to look a little deeper at fear and anxiety and how it permeates our lives and tries to limit us from achieving our goals by thinking they are unrealistic, we are not worthy, or a dozen other excuses.
Think about your biggest goal. Why haven’t you accomplished it yet? FEAR? It’s easy to pretend fear isn’t influencing you or to make excuses. Let’s get more specific – think about your biggest FINANCIAL goal. What are your most common fears surrounding that goal? I did a little research, and a little self-reflection, and here’s what I came up with as five of the more common fears about money:
- I’ll lose all my money in the market.
- Some sort of catastrophe will bankrupt me.
- I can’t afford to send my kids to college.
- I’ll never be able to retire.
- I am afraid I will outlive my money.
At the end of December 2021, the Wall Street Journal published an article titled For a Happier Financial Life in 2022, Face Your Money Fears. But have we actually done this? Are we fearless when it comes to money? After all, it is likely to be around for the rest of our lives, so the sooner we learn to invest some time, energy, and sometimes even money in learning, the easier it is going to be! One of the first steps to overcoming fear is to learn more about it. Once we know what we are afraid of and why, we are able to begin to face it, talk about it, and create action to neutralize the feelings.
It is our hope that you will join us in being FEARLESS when it comes to your financial goals. Share below your biggest financial fear. Let’s talk about it so we can all stand proudly like The Fearless Girl in the face of whatever life throws at us!