Money talk can be a minefield for couples. And for many it often becomes easier to avoid. But by understanding the true sources of tension and conflict, you can transcend it. In the second episode in the Love and Money series, Helen and Terry diver deep into the unconscious jobs we give money, and how these stories undermine our ability to cooperate with others effectively. If you’ve struggled with money talk in the past, this episode will explain why, and give you the tools you need to succeed.
What you'll learn:
Helen: Welcome back friend. It’s Helen here. So Terry, what are we talking about today?
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Well, I’m glad to have you back with me because this is now our third or fourth three schedule
ZOOM0001_Tr1: this one.
But we’re gonna be talking about why money talk feels like a minefield for even the most committed couples. We’ve had a few goes of this, haven’t we?
Helen: We have. We have. And you’re spot on. It’s really, really difficult topic. We see it all the time. We’ve experienced it ourselves.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And I reckon most couples would rather change a flat tire on a unicycle in a bloody snowstorm than have important conversations about money.
And there’s some good reasons for that. And we’re gonna be going through what those reasons are today. And even if you don’t feel that way completely, I still think most couples would rather talk about other topics.
Helen: Oh yeah. Completely avoid it at all costs.
Terry: costs. Yeah. And I reckon as well, like, we’ve talked about this before, but there’s those four stages of team development, tuckman’s, four stages, right?
Yeah. There’s forming where you like filling each other out as a couple or as a team. Then there’s storming, figuring out each other’s boundaries, and then there’s norming where you’re settling into some kind rhythm, and then you go from there to performing where you’re hitting what we called terminal velocity, where you’re achieving your potential a team.
Helen: really rising up there. I mean, what we see all the time, and we’ve been there, you see these couples, they go in between stage two storming and stage three norming. So, they manage to work their way outta storming to try to get this new normal and they’re just settling into that rhythm whatever it might be, that tri or something else comes up, comes up, comes up, whatever spending happens and then straight back,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: that was like your example last time, right? what was it? Your earrings? your piercings. Yeah. Hey, we were just getting into norming. We’re back to storming.
Helen: We’re back to storming.
Terry: It’s true though. It’s true.
Helen: though. It’s true. Oh, it’s, and we talk a lot about dysfunctional harmony in this space. It’s those things that we just learned to live with that was having a bit of a laugh before.
We’ve got this internal joke in the family rock up to Chase’s parents’ house. 15 years in. Yeah. They still don’t have internal doorknobs on most of their doors. Like it’s ridiculous. You can’t go to the toilet and shut the door. Yeah. and I think initially I was like, oh, you reckon you’d wanna get that sort of thing fixed pretty quickly And it’s like not just one door, it’s most doors in the house.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. And what you’ve now learned to tolerate it too, haven’t you?
Helen: That’s it. we stopped asking when they were getting, get it fixed and just sort of thought, ah, well I guess we’ve just gotta find ways to make our own privacy. Yeah. Yeah. That’s
ZOOM0001_Tr1: a fantastic example of the norms that we get stuck in and we could see people get stuck in. They’re not norms that we appreciate.
They’re norms that we have to accept.
tolerating not appreciating these norms.
Helen: we wouldn’t make these decisions necessarily for ourselves if we had all the freedoms in the world,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Something you just said sort of triggered something for me. Then the longer it goes on, the more your brain will just fall into this kind of categorization of, okay, so that’s the way things are.
That’s the way they will be. Yeah. And then you just accept,
Helen: Yeah, yeah, yeah. It’s, it’s easier.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. You stop agitating for change. You stop expecting change and you just go, I guess that’s the way it is. And then you turn around and like you said, it’s 15 years later, there’s no fucking doorknobs. That’s
Helen: But they’ve got a couple of doorknobs now. Do you know what? It is really interesting though. Yeah. and this might be relevant or not, there was obviously something that triggered them to change. Yeah. Like there, been something there. Yeah.
Cuz they’ve put up with us so long, like why actually bother getting them to be honest.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. So they’ve got a couple now.
Helen: Yeah, they’ve got a couple.
Glad to hear
that. Yeah. Glad
ZOOM0001_Tr1: to hear that. And I think in the money space, yeah, that might be true. But the majority I would say, And if I look around at the relationships that I saw growing up, it’s the same.
It’s sort of, it does get to a place where, okay, we don’t have doorknobs and that’s how we’re gonna be, we’re gonna live with our doorknobs. Yeah. And this is just our lot
And this is what we have to accept
Helen: and we’re really not at our, like living our true potentials, are we in that state? We’re not performing to our highest potential that we can be.
Not individually or as a couple. Yeah. we were talking a bit about, the need to really understand ourselves so that we can better relate to each other. Yeah. So critical in this conversation.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: To go back to that rowing analogy we talked about in the last episode, it doesn’t matter if you have everything working for you.
If you’re a crew together as a team, if the rudder on your boat is stuck to one side, you can row as hard as you like, but you’ll always row in circles, right? So it’s only when you get beneath the surface. That you can figure out why you’re not moving forward, why you’re going in circles.
You have to be aware of those patterns of existence. You have to build that self-awareness because that’s what leads to just improved awareness around yourself in these interactions, doesn’t it?
Helen: Yeah. So number one, improve metacognition. Yeah. That ability to really step out, see what’s truly happening in the situation as it’s unfolding in front of us. Yeah.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Stop yourself before it gets into this like destructive
Yeah. You can see it. Yeah. You can really see it. And it’s so powerful when you get to that point.
Number two, like that shared language, having that improved dialogue between us. Yeah. Going backwards and forwards and just really actually understanding each other’s point of view. you just ask someone to just accept it without that true understanding.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: and really, really good teams have short hands that they use to pull themselves back into focus, to pull themselves back on track.
And for me, I feel like that’s what the shared dialogue is, where you can kind of name it, you can name it and say, Hey, this is what’s happening again. This is what’s happening again. And we can get back on track instead of getting into that cyclical thing. that’s for me, that shared dialogue where you have this kind of mutual understanding of it.
Oh yeah, I know what you’re talking about. Yeah. We we’re doing that
Helen: Or we see this happening. Yeah. Yeah. We’ve been down this path before. You know how it turns out.
Yeah, yeah. Exactly.
And on three social contracts, so better being able to navigate these really tricky money conversations. Yeah. And doing it in a really constructive way so that we’re really. Truly strengthening our relationship and moving away from damaging it.
Every time we go into these like perceived risky conversations with each other,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: stop building that sort of scar tissue as Ryan and I call it, where it’s like, you know
Helen: the armor, putting
ZOOM0001_Tr1: another accident, you build some scar tissue.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. You wanna move away from that as much as possible.
And it’s really just about just breaking the patterns of the past, right? And just beginning to build a new and better future together. We need to first probably understand the problem before we can get to the solution. So that’s what this whole episode’s gonna be about. And you know what? I wouldn’t even call it an episode.
I would actually call this the first part of a two-part course.
Helen: Yeah. Look out.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: We’re gonna be talking through in depth what this is. And we have really thought through this. This is why I’ve come back to it a few times because nobody’s talked about it. Nobody’s explained this in a way. That really delves down underneath the layers of what’s actually going on here and why we fight about money, all the reasons for it.
And we’re gonna be unraveling each of those layers in this episode, aren’t we?
Helen: Absolutely. And when you get to the end, you’ll be absolutely much better equipped with the exact tools that you need to reline that rudder.
Helen: is just so clear to me. That analogy is so powerful.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Do you remember me saying that analogy to you?
Helen: You’re like,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: You gotta get beneath the surface. Yeah.
Helen: gotta get beneath the surface. It’s like the iceberg analogy as well. In teams, you really do have to understand what’s truly going on. So once you get that rudder realigned, you’re clearly gonna be making much better progress towards where you wanna go and you’re gonna harness all that energy in the one direction.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: That’s really key point, right. Because guess what? There’s been a lot of ex, there’s always gonna be a lot of energy expended. Yeah. A lot of nervous energy. Anyway. You may as well have that actually like point towards something you want as opposed to being expended on something that you don’t want.
So it’s not harder.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: It’s not harder to do this. You’re actually gonna be doing the same amount of work, but actually the work will pay off.
Helen: might, send energy in 10 different directions and instead we’re gonna be focusing in on just that one direction. You both actually gonna be taking that same one direction for once in your life.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: So let’s talk about what we’re gonna cover in this episode.
Helen: what we are gonna cover four financial alter egos that cause us to just talk past each other and these ones that get us into these circular arguments with each other and just create havoc, damage our relationships send us down paths that we don’t wanna be on really.
And the unseen forces that shape our relationship with money and later our relationships with others when it comes to money.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. That’s pretty important too, right? So I think the first part’s about kind of diagnosing or explaining the issues and why we get into it, and then it’s like the, all of the influences that get us there. Yeah. Going through those one by one, the lath is one more thing as well at the end where we’re gonna explain why it’s so much harder to talk about money than it needs
Helen: to be.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And spoiler alert for you, it’s not something you’ve done, it’s something you live with. So we’ll go through that as well. And by the end of this episode, you’re gonna know exactly why Money talk can feel like a minefield, right? You’re gonna have so much, better, deeper appreciation for your relationship with money and that’s gonna help you manage money better in your relationship together as a team.
And that’s our whole focus. And our whole goal for this episode is to normalize this for you, to help you understand it at a much, much deeper level so that you can move beyond it. Which is what we’ll be covering in the next, won’t we? Yeah,
Helen: absolutely. Now, I was reading the show notes. You’ve got two Easter eggs.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: You’re like, what’s an Easter egg?
Helen: I was like, we, it’s certainly not Easter, but I wanna know more.
What are these two Easter eggs?
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah, so Easter eggs is this concepts from, a game term, right? And an Easter egg is something that you can find, like it’s something that’s hidden somewhere that you find at and it’s exciting.
there is two Easter eggs in this episode. One of ’em is gonna help you make the most of this episode and the key framework we’re gonna cover in this episode, it’s gonna help you make the most of this for yourself. And then the other one’s gonna help you better engage your partner in this conversation.
Cause if you listen to this, maybe you listen to this episode and the one before it, and you go, oh man, I really, want to engage my partner in this conversation about money, but we’ve never actually succeeded at it. We’re gonna give you a tool that’s gonna give you a step by step process for having that conversation.
In this episode that you’ll be able to download straightaway and use.
Helen: Yeah. We’re not just asking you to go in, give you a lot of energy, going blind to this sort of thing.
Are we? No, that’s not what
ZOOM0001_Tr1: You learn from our lessons. Trust me. Trust me.
Helen: So now that we talked about all about what we’re gonna cover today,
Helen: talk about decoding our financial frame of reference.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah, so this is the first part of understanding the four financial alter egos. We talked about this and in order for you to understand this model that we’re gonna take you through, you need to understand this idea of a frame of reference. And, and I feel like it’s one of the most valuable things to understand about almost anything really, because how you see something determines what you do with
ZOOM0001_Tr1: The way you see something determines how you react to it. Cuz we’re moving through the world all the time, and in our environment we’re seeing objects and things. We’re creating meaning with our minds about what that means. And then we are deciding what to do about those stories. Yeah. And so if you can understand how you see something, you can start to decode why you’re doing certain
things with it. Yeah.
So a few examples for you. Michelangelo. created the statue of David and somebody asked him one day, how did you do this? you’re a genius. How did you make this happen? He said the statue was always there. I just chipped away all of the, stone around it to bring it forth.
So what’s important about that story is everybody else was just walking past a
rock. It was huge rock.
They just saw it as a big rock. Yeah. And he saw it as a masterpiece. Yeah. He saw some sort of shapes and that determined the way he interacted with that thing. Everybody else just walked past it.
Yeah. and so then he became Michelangelo and the statue of David was one of his most famous paintings. Michael Jordan’s another one.
I’ve actually spent a fair bit of time studying him last year. I find him to be a really interesting character.
A really tormented man,
Helen: to be
honest with you. Yeah,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And really studying and understanding him and his success, it showed me that everybody else saw a basketball court. Differently. Everybody else saw it as fame. Other people saw it as a vehicle for money. Other people saw it as a vehicle for acceptance. When they found whatever it was, he saw it as a proving ground.
And he deliberately created situations where we had to prove himself. And it’s actually quite sad. You can go onto YouTube and you can see him accepting
ZOOM0001_Tr1: hall of fame status. And he’s still so insecure that he needs to point
He’s still proving, isn’t he?
yeah. To this day. No, no. This is what he’s focused on, isn’t it? The whole time.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: it’s what made him
And so you can see the dark side of that greatness, but you can see that like the way he saw a basketball court wasn’t the same as everybody else. So that, meant that he brought a different level of intensity to every training session, every practice, every gym session, every in between thing.
So, That made him great on the court. it doesn’t necessarily mean you condone who he
Helen: or No,
no, no. And we’re also not telling you to necessarily have these frames of reference either.
Not saying that you need to prove to anyone
ZOOM0001_Tr1: don’t, you
absolutely don’t. But it’s just two good examples. I think. You had another good one as well. Do you wanna talk through
Ka? Oh, Kimmy Kay. I mean Instagram as well. She just saw it as a focus group. So building this billion dollar brand in record time.
Can you explain a little bit more about that?
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Can you woman explain it to me? I,
Helen: Oh look, mine, limited view, actually I’m not a huge Kardashian fan, believe it or not. Is that literally it was about engaging the her audience around us, testing ideas. Yeah.
Seeing what worked, what didn’t work drawing people in. Is that what you saw?
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. Elise told me a little bit about it and she said that she read an article and Kim made this point and she used the words focus group to explain social media. And it was at a time where most celebrities were just trying to amass
Mm-hmm. And just using it to validate themselves.
And she said, social media is not a place to get validation. it’s a place for you to understand your
you to understand what they want and
Helen: need from
And then to
so engaging in those questions, more of a conversation going backwards and forwards.
And again, her, frame of nce is asking, asking her followers to be engaged to comment like, what do you think about
Yeah. So then she builds a brand that personifies how they see her and what they want from her. And they wanna be able to bottle what they see from her.
So she gives it to ’em in
ZOOM0001_Tr1: builds a billion dollar
Helen: It’s funny how that worked. it’s just genuinely smart understanding. Exactly. what people wanted and needed from
Helen: Absolutely. So, we were talking a bit
Helen: couples being able to look at one thing and seeing it from two different perspectives.
Yeah. you know, you look back in science and we all seen this picture in high school, we see the, the old woman, young woman picture. Yes. I remember that one. Yeah. Or the, or there there’s another common one. The, the duck or
ZOOM0001_Tr1: the rabbit Yes.
Helen: of thing. Yeah. there’s no right or wrong.
Yeah. Usually though one dominates for you. Yeah. And it’s very hard to see the other perspective, although you do know it’s there. That’s the thing. once it’s called out, you know that the other perspective’s there. So this optical illusion, the difference in perceptions exists and it’s the same for couples.
We are both often looking at the same problem and seeing it from these completely different frames of reference.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: problem and same object money. And this is why we talk past each other and this is why we get into arguments cause we’re not even talking about the same
thing. cuz what we’re looking at is completely different. So it’s important to understand that cuz what we’re about go through now as a model, is it gonna help you understand a little bit more about your frame of reference when it comes to
So let’s take a look at how we see money and go through this four
financial alter ego model.
Helen: Let’s jump into it.
So there’s four of them, is it?
ZOOM0001_Tr1: There’s four, yeah. And I guess just a bit of an insight as to where this came from. So this is more just observation and just understanding that I guess how we feel dictates what we do.
And for us, like we spent years and years and years working with people like yourself in the trenches. Really understanding like what is happening for people on a day-to-day moment to moment level when it comes to money. And I guess.
for me is, most people, most money experts get really clear on how money works and they educate themselves and then they say, I wanna get this result. but they spend no time at all on the most important variable, which is how we
How do you work with, money and
Helen: not just us, they a group of people work. No, no, no. How do you work with money? Yeah. And I think when you first said that to us Yeah.
Like it was an easy kind of comment about Oh yeah, yeah. But I actually sat down, I was like, oh, like it took a while to sink in. And I’ve seen members as well. It’s sort of, you can see the cogs turning their brain. They’re like, yeah, yeah, yeah. Me, like, as in me, my behavior and my decisions, shit. Yeah.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Because I mean, it’s through three variables, right? There’s you. Plus money equals result. And everybody, including myself when I first got into this, just goes, Hey, money results.
Let me understand money and the
result. Yeah, Yeah,
Let me understand money and the result and ignore
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: So the key point here we’re trying to make is it’s not how money works that matters. It is how you work with money that determines your results. And that’s why it’s so important to start from here, And we talked a bit about the save of v spender thing before, didn’t we? We need to get
Yeah. we’re in a different
We’re clearly beyond that. It’s quite a traditional view, but it’s still pervasive, no doubt. Like I think it’s an easy to understand concept that a lot of people have heard about. So yeah, like it’s easy to stereotype just as it is with a lot of different topics.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: I always remember feeling a bit disgruntled with Pete Thornhill saying comments like if a savor and savor get together,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: and spender get together, you’re good. But if a savor and spender get together, you’re buggered.
And I’m like, who are you to say
It’s quite black and
ZOOM0001_Tr1: isn’t it? It’s very black and white, and I can tell you categorically now, After three or four years, we have couples who are savers and spenders and still make it work.
And so we have to get beyond that kind of thinking. Yeah.
Because I think makes people think there’s no
Helen: hope for
Yeah, it does. Cuz you Oh, I’m just in that, bucket.
We’re in that bucket. Oh, well
ZOOM0001_Tr1: that’s our lot in life. It, it creates like a fixed mindset. You’re like that, that’s how you are,
So we wanted to talk about like more understanding which way you lean so that you can actually learn how you can compensate for each other successfully.
And you’re turning those quirks into a strength. So it’s more just having that awareness. Having that awareness given certain events
ZOOM0001_Tr1: in your life Mm.
Helen: where you might end up and where you might sway, and then how that interacts with
ZOOM0001_Tr1: your partner. Yeah.
And in this model we’re gonna talk about different biases for action and, and how we relate to money. Right. But the comment here isn’t that these about biases are bad, that these alter egos are bad and you must.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: of them. The comment is that a bias that’s taken too far that you’re not in control of, that’s in control of you becomes a liability.
But if you do understand that these are your biases, you can start to work with them, work together around them, and actually get them in balance. And it can be a strength. Yeah. In that
So that’s the point. The very best teams, they do lean into those quirks. They say, you’re a lot like that.
Let’s make the
let’s take all the best parts of that and leave the bad,
parts that aren’t as helpful, so that’s the whole thing. Now, first Easter egg
We’re gonna talk through this model now and it is a little bit conceptual.
We’re gonna do our very best to paint this picture for you visually in your mind as a listener. But. Underneath this in the show notes, there’s gonna be a link that you can see the visual we’re about to explain. So you can see it as we’re talking through it, but also there’s a module in one of our courses, build Your Cash Cushion.
We’re gonna unlock that for the folks in the community. So
if you wanna actually go through this full module, see this whole thing, get, sort of build out and understand it for yourself, and even fill out a bit of a worksheet that helps you determine, which one of these makes the most sense for you, then jump into the community and you’ll be able to access that from there.
All you need to do, hit that link in the show notes. It says join the podcast community. I’m pretty sure it says that, or something along those lines. And it’s the link that says Compass and you’ll be able to get access to
as we go.
So if there’s your
Helen: chase, chase, are you listening? It’s time for you to re review, buddy.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Alright, so let’s go through this model.
Helen: Alright, two dimensions. So main two we’re talking about today. Yeah. Number one, how we feel about money. Whether we loathe it, love it, lust it even.
And then number two, what do we do with money?
Do we scrimp, save or
Yeah. So those two dimensions, they need to sort of be an X and
Okay. So on the X axis is how we feel. on the far left of that X axis, we have loathe money. And just to explain that, that means I don’t like money. I kind of hate it. It’s annoying to me. I wish it wasn’t part of my life. I don’t feel good about it. Okay. That’s loathe. Love is the word we use.
It’s in the middle. Love here is the kind of love you have for your partner. It’s the kind of love you have for your kids. It’s like an
Helen: acceptance. Yeah.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: It’s, I know you’re not perfect, but I accept you
ZOOM0001_Tr1: I accept you for what you are. Right? Yeah. So when I say love, that’s what we mean.
And then you’ve got lust. Lust is on the other extreme. It’s a fantasy. you’re infatuated with the thing. Yeah. And you’re taken by it. Right? So these are the three sort of feelings. And you can think about it like a pendulum on the extremes. You’ve got lust way over on the right. And then on the other extreme, you’ve got loathe way over on
In the middle you’ve got loath. that’s the
pendulum. Spectrums are, so yeah. Yeah. there’s multiple of them. You can be anywhere along this axis.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yep. So those are the three feelings. If we go to the Y axis against that, you’ll have scri, save and splurge. So the bottom would be scrimp, the middle would be save, and the top would be splurge.
And when we map those two dimensions against each other, you can start to put it into quadrants. You can start to see these four different alter egos. And they map to patterns of feeling and doing. So. The first pattern. Is loathe and splurge. Which is the guilty
Helen: giver. The
ZOOM0001_Tr1: giver, yeah.
Helen: what a name for it too. The guilty giver. It’s sort of like, ooh, do I wanna be this person? The guilty giver kind of. It’s got, it’s a double-edged sword, isn’t it?
So the pattern is the loath and splurge.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. So this person doesn’t like money for some reason, and they will tend to push it away from them in some way. So that’s the pattern of behavior that you’re gonna notice, right?
So some of the symptoms, this person will say things like, there’s more to life than money.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And they’ll always be finding reasons to either give money away or spend a lot of money. just to kind of, get rid
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And I always remembered of one of our earliest, earliest members I won’t mention her name, but she came to us very early days, not long after you guys
and she said, I, hearing about what you guys are doing.
You’ve gotta help me out.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: I was like, okay. And she said, I’ve always been able to make money my whole life. It’s never been a problem. I’ve always been fine with making money. I just never have 2 cents to rub together. And I know exactly
And I was like, well, that’s
ZOOM0001_Tr1: why it is, that’s great.
And she said yeah, yeah. It’s because I fucking love spending
And I sort of, I just kind of laughed And I just kinda laughed and she’s like, no, no, no. You don’t understand. I actually really love spending money. And I was like, no, no. Okay,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: you just take me through
Helen: your core
ZOOM0001_Tr1: like a moment
by moment, like, explain it to me. And she said, no, sorry. If I’m at the cash register and I’m swiping my card, like the bigger that number that I’m spending, the better I
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And I
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Um, And it’ll make sense why I said
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Later on when I talk about my
Helen: I was just saying these frames of reference come together and you’re like, hang on, this doesn’t sound familiar.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: So let’s explore this. And I said, tell me about, what you saw growing up and what’s your sort of history and
where do you come from? And we have this conversation and we sort of get to the point where she tells me that, When she’s somewhere between six and eight years old, I think it was that her parents split up and her dad got together with somebody new.
so this stepmom that came into the family she didn’t like
She didn’t like her
all. And turns out she was pretty manipulative. And she also happened to be quite wealthy and would often use money as a way to manipulate
the kids. Yeah.
Turn against each other or curry favor, that sort of thing.
And I said, oh, that makes so
And it’s sort of obvious, but when it’s your own situation, it’s
No, you necessarily see it. No.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: No. So she goes, no, no, no, no. Explain. Like, I don’t get it. And I was like, well, surely you could see it? And she’s like, no. And I said, so your stepmom came into the family, you labeled her as bad evil, and then money as associated concept.
You said people with money are what? And she goes, evil. And I go, cool. That makes sense, right? She goes, yeah. And I go, now let’s invert it. And I said, so that means people who don’t have money are what? And she goes,
yeah. Yeah. Those are the sort of people in the world that I am aspiring to.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. And I said, so when you spend the big sum of money, does it feel a little bit like you’re cleansing
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And she goes, that’s exactly how it feels. It feels like I’m gonna confession or something. And I was like, there you go. So that’s kind of the idea here, right? So the splurge pattern is the same. Like you could be shopping, you could be giving money away, you might be making a big deal about some money that you’re spending on something, whatever.
You’re pushing it away from you, but you’re pushing it away because you feel guilty about
it. Now there’s an unconscious job that each of these alter egos gives money. And this job, you don’t even know that you’ve given money this job, but you’ve given it
ZOOM0001_Tr1: and the job that the guilty giver gives money is money should make me feel superior in
Right. Because I’m
ZOOM0001_Tr1: If I don’t have it, yeah.
So I’ll use it to feel good now, whatever way I can use it to feel good, better, better than somebody else in some way or better than I was then that’s me using money
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. Okay.
Helen: what you’re saying is that it’s the frame of reference here, right?
Yeah. It’s a moral compass.
Is that it?
Right. that is how the guilty giver is seeing money. Money is a moral compass. It says something about you as a
And so you can start to see how like your behavior starts to get influenced
idea. Oh, yeah. All the time. And I, I’ve seen this as well as a young child myself with quite a tragic situation happened to a family that we were really close with who lost, a parent in the situation. And single dad, two young children defaulted to this moral compass, this frame of reference
didn’t know what else to do.
And you, see it play out in this situation.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: how did it play out for him? So he was using money
Helen: just spoiling, just absolutely just giving, giving, giving, giving, giving in order to almost compensate for Cause he felt bad. Yeah. He felt bad. And he thought that, honestly, if I can give my children everything, just give them the world.
Yeah. I’ll make things better again, and the more I can spend
The better outcome that they’ll have.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. It’s interesting, isn’t it? So I wouldn’t say it’s a super common one. This
one, no. But it is quite
Helen: deep seated
ZOOM0001_Tr1: if it’s
You see a lot of actors.
in this scenario got a lot
Yeah. Got a lot of money, but want to be perceived like a good person. Talk a lot about their causes, talk a lot about their donations, talk a lot about their charities and that sort of thing. Because the whole point of the arts is to not be a business
Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: get beyond the business person. So there’s this whole
Helen: reconciliation Yeah. If, if you’re in the arts, you’re not in it to make
Yeah. You’re not supposed to. It’s all be about the, the passion and the love and the art and that sort of thing. And then next minute you’re Chris Heworth
you make build,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: of dollars.
You’ve gotta be seen to be doing something good.
Helen: So that’s the guilty giver. Let’s move on to Ulta Ego two. We’re talking about the resentful Poer.
Can you explain a bit about this one for me? So the second one?
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. So it’s a little bit more common than the other one. But the pattern here is low as well. All right. So we’re still on that far left of the spectrum still on that extreme and this way to the left.
So loathing is the same feeling, but instead of splurging with
money, we don’t splurge, we scrimp. Yeah. We’re trying to hold onto it. We’re trying to keep it so there’s more of a feeling of sort of scarcity
and this is the kind of person that sort of, the symptoms would be, I do what’s required, but no more, and I don’t even see that there’s more
ZOOM0001_Tr1: the example that I’ll give you again is another person that I knew years and years and years ago, she used to talk about this and said, it’s weird, but.
will just coast along and do like very little until some sort of crisis happens. And then I find all this creativity, there’s all this ingenuity.
I just come up with all these ideas and I get myself back on top. So if the example that she gave was, oh, I got this massive tax
Helen: bill. Oh yeah. And then
ZOOM0001_Tr1: just like sprung into action. I became this
ZOOM0001_Tr1: I had started this business, I did all this stuff. And as soon as I got on top of that bill, I just went back to coasting. And she’s like, I go back to level. I never get ahead.
just stay there.
And so that’s the pattern, right? Where it’s just this person’s always just kind of like on an even keel or coming back from behind trying
Trying to get back from behind. Yeah. To me, like personally, it doesn’t resonate with me.
And it strikes me as quite difficult position to come
Helen: in terms of the way this person may be living their life in terms of their satisfaction with things and just their day to day. Like it looks tough,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And when we chatted about her past, her history, she said, you know, my parents never had 2 cents to rub together.
ever. And I was like, okay. where did you live? And she’s like, in a rural community, like I didn’t really have much exposure to anybody else. That’s all you saw and hurt. Yeah.
Then that’s all
Helen: see. I’m trying to put it in the context of like who we might have come across in our own lives and these sort of alter egos that we’ve seen play out.
So maybe these people that they thrive off not having anything and, and just getting by. And that’s what they’re super proud of, that they, just literally live off the smell of an oily
Yeah. It’s almost an identity where it’s like on the
blue collar Battler,
Helen: and I’m absolutely proud of it. Like that is, I don’t need to be anything more
Yeah. And there’s a, sort of a sense of like, I’m the humble
I’m the humble one and let, people are less humble than me. I do what’s required. Other people get to do all the fun stuff.
I do what I have
to do. Yep.
Helen: And again, talking about the flip side of that is then potentially then their perception of others.
Yeah. Like greedy. Materialistic. I’m sure
ZOOM0001_Tr1: your passions. Do you,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Helen. I’m glad that you’re in that
privileged position, Helen. Yeah.
Some of us just do what’s
Yeah. Or you wanna actually make, a lot of money.
You know what that means about
right? Yeah. Yeah.
Exactly. Exactly. So it should give you a bit of a clue, right? We’ll talk about the job here. So the unconscious job for the guilt to giver you’ll remember was it’s, money’s got to make me feel superior.
Whereas the unconscious job for the resentful ER is, money’s just got to help me survive. Yeah. So the first one, superiority, this one, survival.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And then the frame of reference for the resentful ER is, money’s just a basic necessity. That’s all it is. It’s nothing more.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: it just helps me
Helen: get by.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: guess I’ve gotta get it cuz it’s just this thing I’ve gotta get to
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. So you cannot get outside of that paradigm if you don’t expose yourself to any, other realities. Right. I remember when, Elise and I moved to Sydney, we moved to Mossman. Mossman is just an insane
Yes. It’s a pretty,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: it is very uppity. And we’re like living on the beaches of Mossman in this apartment and we just kinda lucked into this apartment. And I remember just walking around that place going, wow, I guess you see it in movies and things like that, but when you live
amongst it, you start going. Yeah, Right. it’s not a rare thing. It’s not as rare as I think it is. No.
Helen: but is this true wealth is what you’re talking about, true wealth?
ZOOM0001_Tr1: wealth. Well, it’s not wealth, it’s means, so for example, we’re talking about money as a basic necessity. Yeah. What do you need?
The massive, massive house, but you don’t
ZOOM0001_Tr1: but people
it. it just forces you to challenge your own conventions and assumptions. Yeah. And I, when I was at uni, was lucky enough to get given this personal training job by one of my lecturers. And I remember going to work with these rich people,
yeah, yeah, yeah.
The guy that owns all the land for Lendlease in Victoria. His house.
It’s like a 12 car garage.
And I walk in and they’re like alright, cool. So this is how our old personal trainer set up the gym. Tell us, give us a list of equipment you want us to buy and we’ll set it up for you. And I get to meet these people and they’re just the loveliest people. This guy ended up becoming like almost a bit of a mentor of mine. He was just this quiet, understated guy, and the wife just treated me like a son and they, their, daughters treated me like a brother. And it just forced me to confront all these
Yeah, Yeah, yeah,
all these assumptions of people that you’ve made over time.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Well, I mean, it started to get, make me think about like, you’ve created these stories in your head and these are all stories, these alter egos. They’re
that they’re stories
and they’re your frame of reference, right. They’re just the way you are seeing the
Helen: Definitely. we’ve talked about number one, number two. Yeah. There’s number three and four. So number three, the fearful hoarder, or I feel like this one is this one a bit close
ZOOM0001_Tr1: oh, this one. This one cuts real close to the bone.
Helen: We’ve talked about this one a lot actually. And I do personally understand it. So tell me a bit more about
Yeah, so if you haven’t already figured it out, this would be where I go under stress and pressure. This is how I’d be reacting. and this is probably probably something I wanted to say at the start, which is don’t label yourself as this.
Yeah. You’re not saying you are this, you’re saying that when you’re reacting to money, when you are coming from a place where you’re not thinking, but you’re
then this is where you’ll go. So
Helen: So it’s the emotional
ZOOM0001_Tr1: It’s the dominant, pattern of behavior that’s guided by a frame of reference, basically.
So, don’t allow
Yeah. Please don’t go and like put it on your email signature like I am. It’s not your
ZOOM0001_Tr1: identity. You’re not like this. No. But fle hoard is definitely where I go under stress and pressure. And so this is at the other end of the pendulum, so I don’t loathe the money.
It’s more of a last, and it’s a scrimp as well. It’s, you wanna hold onto it? So you remember, if you’ve listened to the podcast for a while, I talked about sitting on all this cash for like, years before I got invested. Yeah. And knowing intellectually that I needed to be invested, but refusing
Helen: yeah. Sorry, I’m not, I shouldn’t be
Helen: It’s not farming. Like
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Well, I mean, it is funny. It’s situation comedy is just tragedy plus time.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: I talk about how it cost me $30,000 in foregone
ZOOM0001_Tr1: to do nothing. And I knew, I’m like, I had this battle. I’m like, I understand that I need to be investing.
Why am I not doing
Helen: it? And
ZOOM0001_Tr1: it was because I’ve got this frame of reference around being a fearful hoarder, right? So the symptoms is like, you are, you’re holding onto it, you’re clinging to it. It’s like that real gollum sort of,
Helen: hold what if, what if, what if, what did this,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: what if,
if, what if? Yeah. And so you are always working against this.
And the unconscious job for the fearful hoarder is that money needs to make me feel safe and secure. So I’ll just go back to those other jobs. Remember? Guilty Giver. Superiority. Yeah. Resentful. Er. Survival.
Fearful hoarder. Safety.
Helen: security. Yeah. this has to look after
Gotta look after
me. Yeah. yeah.
yeah. So that give you a clue as to the frame of reference, which is money is a sword and shield that protects me from a dangerous world. I don’t know what’s gonna happen out there, but I’ve got to have this here
Helen: to protect me.
Yeah. so many things that you can’t control and you know that,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Again, shows you a little bit of how you’re gonna kind of act and interact in relationships and how you’ll interact with other, this. Hopefully you’re starting to think about how some of these alter egos mix or don’t mix with others.
Helen: I know.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: remember I said before about the guilty giver?
I was like, what? You like spending money? That’s where the, what was coming from? that’s the fear for order. And it’s a quite common one. we’re gonna talk about gender roles later on. It’s more likely to be a male than it is to be a female.
it’s not to say that it can’t be the other way. Absolutely. It can, it’s just more
Yeah. Yeah. And same as the fourth one.
Helen: the fourth one is the exuberant shopper. Yeah. And I was saying to you, I kind of do, I do actually relate to this one in some ways. And again, I equally think this is probably tended to be more of a female alter ego.
So the lust and the splurge pattern, love, money, love spending it. And again, a little bit stereotypical, but there is a part of me that goes, yeah, I get it. This is kind of the way I feel about it at times.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Elise’s like
So think about this for a sec. Fearful water versus exuberant shopper.
Helen: You come together and then what
This is why we disagree with the Peter Thornhill thing, because we can make it work. But is interesting, right? Because, this is the patent. It’ll be like anything remotely good happens.
It’ll be like, let’s go out and celebrate. And I’ll be like, what? And
Hey Terry, do you wanna go on holidays? That’s the other thing. Do you wanna just go on a spontaneous holiday and spend
ZOOM0001_Tr1: So this is a good one. So holidays I would love
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. Holiday, unplanned
So you don’t wanna go camping tomorrow, but like really glamping.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: I’ll be like, what’s the plan? There is no plan. It’s
what are we just wasting money just pouring it down the drain.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: this is why we’re talking about you get into circular arguments and you can get your way out of it cuz you know where you’re defaulting
ZOOM0001_Tr1: and this is a classic one actually. It’s probably a really good example. Very pertinent one. So the thermo mix, thermo mix of ours. I dunno if you know what Thermomix is, you’ll know that people who have them love them. Elise loves a thermo mix and it finally broke after about 12, 10,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: The other day
Helen: like, you’ve used it so much that it broke.
Yeah. It’s actually been
ZOOM0001_Tr1: how many times we’ve used it. And and she was like Well, I can get this new magic mix thing and I can get it repaired. And get it repaired. I’m like, why do you need to do both?
she’s like, so I can do more bulk cooking? And I’m like, sweet. But I want to pad the offset
ZOOM0001_Tr1: as much as we possibly can. I wanna make sure we’re looking
Because I don’t know what Phil Lowe’s gonna do next. He’s proven himself to be very
Phil And Lisa’s like, I kind of
Helen: don’t give a shit about Phil, Phil Lower. I kind of wanna like know that
ZOOM0001_Tr1: well this is where it was useful, right? Because she does know about that. We’ve been talking about this continuously. Like we just need to make sure that we’re move our way. We can weather this storm and be smart with our money. So the discussion was how do we be smart? How do we have both?
How do we get this to work? And this is why I say it’s so important. Cause I know I’m defaulting to keep, she knows she’s defaulting to spend. So now that allows us to. Actually have a conversation about it. it’s not about your way or my way. It’s what are we trying to accomplish here?
Yeah. And we will get to what you need to be able to have these better conversations. The, I guess the concrete things you need in place, but even just knowing that I’m shifting to my default and you are shifting to your default.
Yeah. I was gonna say metacognition really speaks to it, doesn’t it? So that you both know, and you both see it as it’s unfolding.
This is what’s happening here with, your two different frames of reference
Yep. A hundred percent. A hundred percent. So
Helen: Talk about me, the jobs that money has to do. If I’m an exuberant shopper, which probably am, eh.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: So satisfy my feelings, satisfy my state. Change my
Helen: state, basically
Like it’s all on motion, isn’t
it? Satisfaction. Yeah.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Again, we’ll go through all but like guilty, give us superiority, resentful, hoer survival, fearful hoarder security. whereas exuberant shopper satisfaction of desires change my state.
so the frame of reference for the exuberant shopper is they sees money as a drug. It needs to alter my state, it needs to change how I’m
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And so this is really important to understand, right? Cuz the frame of reference is dictating an unconscious job, which is telling us we need to use money in a certain way and we’re not even thinking about it.
Yeah. And we talked about before, how we talk past each other. I use the word money and you think drug and I think sword
And so you are talking like money should be used as a drug. And I’m talking way
Yeah. And I’m talking about like fun we’re gonna have tomorrow and like all this stuff that we’re gonna do that we’re gonna spend money on, you’re look, you
ZOOM0001_Tr1: got black and you, and I’m looking at you like you got two heads, like what are you
We are definitely not doing that.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: So that should hopefully make some sense, right? So we’ve got these different frames of reference, these financial alter egos, and it’s based on how we feel about money and what we do with money. We map those two things together.
We create these patterns of behavior that we don’t even know and it’s like we’re on train tracks. Yeah. And we just get stuck on these train tracks and we never even look at it.
go through our whole lives that way and we don’t understand why we’re not interacting or relating well around it. We talk past each
Helen: Yeah. Alright.
Helen: now we’ve sort of, we’ve named the game, haven’t we? With these four financial alter egos. Mm-hmm. And when we name the game, we can literally choose, this is where we can choose, which is really important. We can, play the
Yeah. exactly. It is so important to
yeah, like I think that’s, that’s Elise’s statement.
She’s like, once you name the game, you
And so the better we understand ourselves, we don’t have to get bogged down into these cyclical kind of conflicts. We can start to realize, oh, okay, this is
Yeah. This is what’s going on.
Yeah. we can see it for what it actually is. The true reality I like to say. Or the true reality for now and like it’s just now.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. And you had an insight before from Anais Nin that I think explains
you know how we get here, isn’t it?
Helen: So we don’t see things as they are. We see them as
ZOOM0001_Tr1: we are.
Helen: we are right now. I was saying to you, every time I read this statement, I breathe a huge sense of relief cuz it just validates to me I can be who I am. Yeah. And it’s just what’s happening right now. Yeah. I don’t need to try to be anyone different, change anything. This sort of acceptance
this is, what’s going on.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. And it’s not about making this wrong or bad, it’s about understanding and then sort of working with reality. And again, sort of getting beyond it basically getting above it, getting from the
Helen: reactive part
our brain. essentially, I think what we’re saying here is that we’re, each of us is a product of our past. Yeah. And your past isn’t more right than mine. Just like my past isn’t more right than yours. So for me to project my reality onto you and suggest that my way is the right
ZOOM0001_Tr1: it’s quite naive and
you call it out, you say like, it makes so much sense, but when you’re in a conversation with a couple, and this is like
Helen: you are not being
ZOOM0001_Tr1: rational You’re so, in the
weeds. You’re not
you’re in the weeds. Yeah.
Which I think is why it’s so good to have a third party, right?
you do those life by design sessions with folks. And you can actually get beyond the reactive stuff. You get to the constructive, you get to the ambitious part of it, and you build out something different. And we’ll talk more about that in the next episode.
Helen: talk about? Three layers of meaning
Yeah. So I, on that insight, right, you’re a product of your past. Let’s actually understand how we got here. how did you adopt this frame of reference? How has your past led you to this narrative that has created these habitual patterns of behavior and thought that is not help, that are not always helping you?
There’s three layers I think that we need to, to sort of go through to understand this. The first one is emotional imprints. The second one is gender roles, and then the third one is personal values. So let’s go through each of those.
Helen: So emotional imprints. When we talk about this, we’re talking about what our first interactions with money were and emotions are so important in our decision making, and I didn’t really fundamentally understand this truly until I joined the mentorship and that actually we’re, we make decisions on the basis of our emotions.
not rational thought and decisions, believe it or not.
We play to our emotions and we talk about these peak positive moments in our life
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Well, even just your first interaction.
Right? Yeah. What was your first interaction with money? Do you
I feel like when I actually
and I could go and buy something.
Yeah, totally. I went down like to Chapel
Chapel Street. yeah.
And I bought these sick pairs of like
Helen: flares with sparkles on it so I could go clubbing and impress all the boys.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: god, there’s a shop in you.
Do they, you still got the
ZOOM0001_Tr1: got the flare shit?
Helen: They ah, I thought it was a rockstar
Like an absolute celebrity.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Well, let’s decode that moment here for a sec, right? Because, you sort of gloss over it, but it’s actually super important, your first real interaction.
And it’s not just like the 20 cents your grandma gave you to get some lollies at the corner shop that day. It’s the first time that you got a real amount of money that you could use to buy or experience something you really wanted to do. So for you, what did that represent, that moment where
Well, actually I was like Big dog.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: big dog.
Helen: the boss
I’m owning life. Yeah. Like, let’s put it into safety.
So probably like 1990 something and spent like a hundred dollars on like
A hundred dollars in the nineties. Woo.
Helen: I know, I know. And again, what does that mean?
it was related to other things about what it would do for me, like this, outfit and what it would mean
Yeah. it’s usually the same for everybody. And I, I think, there’s like, almost like these emotional imprints, it usually comes with a sense of like independence and control, where it’s like I
ZOOM0001_Tr1: for myself. I don’t have to ask my parents for these genes now. Yeah. Here I am buying it with my own money. So it comes with that sense of I’m
Yeah. I’m an
Helen: I can play with the serious people in the world
ZOOM0001_Tr1: so I think that first experience matters and then you’ve got peak moments.
And peak moments can be both positive and or negative. Are there any sort of moments that stand out for you where you go, man, that was a peak moment.
Helen: No, I reckon I just told you that. Damn.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: lost my Was
Helen: was my,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: that was my peak? Well that could be the same. That
it for you?
ZOOM0001_Tr1: I have this peak moment, which I only recently learned, which really explains so much about why I am a
hoarder. So much.
I would always just stress when financial decisions were being made. when they were being made that they impacted me or I felt they impacted me, but I wasn’t a part
ZOOM0001_Tr1: I would stress so much. So the classic one would be, you see the online shopping show up at the
Yeah. And you go, where’d
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Where’d that money
from? is that our money? What’s going on there? and I think that’s super common. I know there’s so many people that have this. Yeah. I did the work to understand what is going on.
why am I having this outsized reaction to a small
ZOOM0001_Tr1: and why do I find it even hard to
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Because I knew logically I’m like, my reaction’s not
It’s not right. it’s interesting. So Elise background is obviously therapy and stuff like, and she’s been doing a lot of this different work and she had me go through this process with her called Havening and she took me through this process and it’s such a weird thing.
I don’t even know how she got me there. Yeah. She took me through this process where she kind of scrambled my
ZOOM0001_Tr1: and I find myself in this kind of weird state and then like something clicks for me. I remember this really important moment. I reckon I was about 10 years old when my dad told me this.
it didn’t even register at the time, but it stayed with me and it stayed with me all the way through my life. it was when he told me about how he became a
farmer, he said, I became a farmer. The day my dad turned up to school when I was 15 years old and said, Hey, jump in the back.
Yeah. I just took, you had a million dollar loan. Mm-hmm. You’re outta school. You’re a farmer now. Your share of the loan is this, your job now is to
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Wow. So
what a, I remember hearing that when I was 10.
And that stayed with me my whole
You’re never forgetting that. Like that is absolutely lasered
So the outsized reaction that I was having is never about the thing in front
ZOOM0001_Tr1: It’s always about that feeling. And I remember I would never have had this conscious thought, but I’ve obviously taken on that emotion. And the emotion was rage. The emotion was, how dare
Yeah. Like, take, that decision.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: how dare you make that decision on my behalf and control me in
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And so, You can see how that plays into feelings about spending and debt and all this kind of stuff that you’ve got to kind of work your way
And if you don’t Yeah. Then it runs you
Yeah. And do you know what I I was talking about before as well, like the little things that happen numerous times that also can equally have the same, like one big peak moment like you were discussing in your life. For me, I’ve had like little things that are patterns over time that just get reinforced numerous times.
So as an incident on their own, they’re nothing. and again I sound silly saying it, but it was the number of times it was said, and I’m not trying to shame. I didn’t have a bad
It was stuff like, We go to the checkout as children with our parents, and I’d always want those bloody like kinder surprise eggs.
the things that are at
Kids’ Heart Place. No, no, we cannot have it. We do not have enough money. And it was messages like that over and
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And that was your narrative when
ZOOM0001_Tr1: too. I don’t wanna replay these like little things.
Helen: Like as children, we were the, the frugal, like, let’s be proud of being frugal. Let’s be proud of all. Like never buying, never buying
anything at all.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: one. So that’s like heresy when you go out to get your
Yeah, Yeah. I
was rebelling against this. Like, oh, I’m just gonna go.
I’m like, yeah, throw money up against the wall.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: yeah. I think that, as you say, they’re little things, but they all add up and they sink
Yeah, yeah, yeah. And you remember it like, why mommy, can I not have the lollipop? I wanna be like the other kids in the playground. They all get lollipops.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: I’m watching my dad work really hard his whole life and repeating to me all the time, if you want to get ahead, you gotta work hard.
And I’m like,
you do. You gotta work real hard. And then I find myself in all these jobs that absolutely demand
Yeah. My job in sport, it’s
Helen: seven day job,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: you know?
and I’m like, what’s going on here? Yeah. and I start to question all that sort of stuff and be as well.
I’m like, hang on, So the wealthiest people, I guarantee that I’m working as hard as you are. Did. They’re working
So how is that true at all? You know what I
Helen: Yeah. You’re like, wait, why am I still here? Like, what is it? I swear I was gonna end up
ZOOM0001_Tr1: up here. unless you do get down and really interrogate and mine your past in this way, then you’ll be destined to just repeat some of these patterns.
Yeah. Repeat it. And like we said before, once you name the game, you can stop
Yeah. That’s really important,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: I think the key thing is that you need to question your mind.
your mind, don’t take it on. You know what I mean? Like, just understand that absolutely everything you are doing and everything you’re seeing is a perception of reality.
no. It’s not reality at all. that’s the first part. I think I could spend hours and hours and hours and hours on emotional imprints. Yeah. Because I think it is like understanding those things for me have been absolutely Pivotal to being able to interact much more constructively around money.
And if you don’t know that about yourself you are gonna find it so
All right. We’re gonna move on to gender roles here, aren’t we? And we’re gonna start to talk a little
ZOOM0001_Tr1: bit through
Helen: some of those different stereotypes that are still quite pervasive in our society. this is something that comes up all the time.
Have we actually progressed in terms of equity in our society in gender roles? Another pretty big
Helen: Debatable. certainly some evidence that we have, but then again, we are still seeing these different roles play out, aren’t we, in terms of male being
there’s these two roles provider and carer, and it’s just traditional roles, right? Not saying these roles are right or wrong, it’s just traditional roles that have existed in, in heterosexual relationships. So it’s probably not gonna be descriptive of all relationships. Yeah. We are just mainly talking to the ones that we see.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: provider brings in the money, protects the family, right? So brings in the money, protects the family. That’s gonna be a lot around saving and keeping
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Because again, we talked before about fearful water protection, security. Your job as the provider, your job as the mail is to keep your family safe.
Make sure that you do the right thing. And this is the message. Just get beaten into you like, Since you are a baby. Really? Yeah. I find this myself saying this to
I’ve said this to him the other day. I said, your job is to protect India. And I was like,
is it, is it,
Helen: India protect Smith. Hang on, hang on.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: am I
You know, it’s, it’s bizarre, right? But like, so that’s a provider role. Do you wanna talk through the
Helen: car role?
Carer role. This comes up all the time I fell into it, yeah. Without noticing it. But not just being a carer, being a carer, and also on top of that working. Yeah.
Helen: talk about triple burden Yeah, the triple burden, it just ends up being an additional role, an additional sort of identity layer on top of it.
So, I’m the carer, making sure needs are being met and using the money. So I’m, regardless of really what I’m bringing to the household, at the end of the day, I know that there is still a lot in the environment that’s reinforcing the view that predominantly I should be caring and, and volunteering in that community role.
Whether we like it or not, it’s, it is something I’ve had to accept and I tried to fight so hard against it, even when pregnant I, I said like, that’s not gonna be us. Yeah. Like, I’m not gonna fall into these typical stereotypes. Yeah. I’m not. and you said before, again, it came up with Rachel, didn’t
Rachel said this, she said We never had a conversation, but when we were without kids, we were equals. And as soon as we had kids, we fell into these
Yeah. And there was no conversation that was had. It just happened
yeah, yeah. yeah. And absolutely having an anatomical difference
Helen: plays into this
Helen: but there were so many things that we tried to control in this situation. Yet, despite all of that, it still happened.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: It’s hard.
But the key point between these two roles is that one person if thinks it’s their job to keep money and protect the family, the other person thinks it’s their job to spend money to make sure people’s
Helen: needs are
Yeah. And promoting harmony, right? Like they’re
ZOOM0001_Tr1: just make sure we’re all looked after, right? So one person’s trying to use the money, the other person’s trying to keep the money. And again, you don’t know why you’re doing, why it’s harder for you because you haven’t sort of thought about this, but these gender roles are
Yeah. And we, had a good conversation the other day about what’s that remits,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. Yeah. The remit Sadie, he’s got the TV show how to
And he does some great work actually. He was a pretty good early influence on us. it’s interesting, there was a couple in that show where actually Ramit fell, prayed to the gender roles himself.
He made a snap judgment
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And you could tell he assumed that the bloke was the problem, the controlling one, and it was actually the female that, it was the controlling one. So it doesn’t have to be that the male is the provider role and the female is a carer.
In actuality, it was flipped
Helen: other way.
It was flipped. And we, tried to do a bit of analysis over this situation, didn’t we? Because it was a little bit unusual. Well, maybe unusual for us given what we think we thought was the norm in this situation and how flipped this was. But you’re right, he kind of, fell victim to making the same assumptions
ZOOM0001_Tr1: actually told the guy to shut up cuz he assumed that the guy was the
Helen: problem. Yeah.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. And he was very direct about it. And the further it goes on through the series, you go, hang on. She’s assumed the provider role, she’s made all the same assumptions and she’s controlling
Yeah, yeah, yeah. We actually kind of talked that it was to the extreme of this is not a healthy way.
They’re interacting around money and unhealthy to the point where she’s verging on almost a financial abuse type behavior with the
ZOOM0001_Tr1: I’d say a couple of very clear symptoms of financial
he didn’t have his
She questioned all his spending and then she said where all the money went and what
do. Yeah. And I would not say this lightly either. Like I’m clearly a feminist, so I have questions around how they’ve cast these members, given that it’s not the norm. And again, what sort of message that’s trying
to the world, basically about now women working, women working successful
women. again, it was the first episode in the series. So what are people gonna think about successful working women? They’re just gonna think, they’re just going to, they’re dominating, controlling, like, let’s be honest, that’s not
ZOOM0001_Tr1: I’ve never seen
ZOOM0001_Tr1: if it’s gonna be a way, it’s the complete opposite.
It’s the other way. I’ve seen way
where it’s the bloke
where it’s like, it’s, still very traditional incentive. Like, oh, I’m the one who makes the money. Yeah. And you are the one who manages the house. And so you just fall into these roles of managing the money in different ways.
And so I’ve seen that so much and we, this is why we speak out so much against people that are like, manage money separately Yeah. In silos. Because what you see is attribution
Oh, you are managing the money in the house, what did you do? Like, where’s all the money going?
Mm. That to me is one of the most unhealthy conversations.
Yeah. those decisions need to be happening together. Yeah. And so when you are, kind of splitting it into these traditional roles, it makes attribution error
and it doesn’t help at all. So, yeah. These gender roles I think are still very pervasive.
They need to be questioned, they need to be thrown out, particularly around money because it’s
And I was saying to you, I was like standing in the driveway yesterday sweeping,
Helen: I was like, like a good
at home on a day off should is just like doing housework.
was like, why is it we are seeing couples come in and they’ve got these roles still there, but we are seeing a lot of women sort of step up and really trying to show initiative and trying to improve the situation and questioning a lot. Yeah. And we are getting these, a lot of resistance, aren’t we?
And you were getting quite passionate about it. And I was, I was very thankful because I was like, yeah, I know, what it’s like.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: I’ve been on these calls and sometimes I feel like reaching through the phone and just shaking the bloke and saying, mate, pick your socks up.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Like you can tell that there’s that sort of, it’s a unquestioned thing and I understand it cuz I come from that environment.
But it doesn’t mean you have to stay that way. No. You can question all that stuff. it’s costing you, you know what I mean? Yeah. it’s
No, no, no, this is not a male versus female type thing. We wanna be talking about,
Yeah. And when you have two humans that are trying to come together as a team. Yeah. Making sure they’re reaching their full potential as a couple. Yeah. So regardless of who they are, and you see it all the time. And I’m that’s why I reckon we see progress is that we’re seeing women want to drive these conversations more and they are contributing a lot more economically and financially to the household.
So I kind of feel like they think it’s also their responsibility to, but should it be their
ZOOM0001_Tr1: well this is what’s interesting, right? So. In that scenario the women’s role, the gender role, they’ll be feeling the stress of going, are we using our money correctly?
Am I overspending Am I doing it? Yeah. So they’re open.
But then if we’re falling into these patterns, and unfortunately sometimes we get on some of these calls and it’s obvious
to me that
the blokes like, I’m
Helen: too proud. Yeah.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And also, I need to be seen, like I know everything and I’m not really comfortable on this call, not knowing everything. So I’m gonna just retract, I’m gonna retreat.
And ultimately what I’m saying is my ego’s more important than
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And that is a
Helen: tragedy. It
is. If I can help anyone in
ZOOM0001_Tr1: the world,
Helen: I will dedicate my time to trying to find more effective ways to communicate to that human, to bring them along on the spectrum of where they’re at in the, in a closed
Perfect. And I say this ad nauseum. Yeah, you don’t know, and you’re not supposed to, because we’ve grown up in an environment where we’re not taught, it’s obfuscated. There’s language the finance industry makes, does a great job of creating this big shroud of mystery around it. So you sitting there and, and thinking that I have to be seen
Yeah. it’s not fair on you. No. And it’s absolutely not fair on your partner. And it is gonna cost you
Helen: So we’ve talked about emotional imprints and we’ve talked about gender
Take us into what Personal
Yeah. So this is the last layer. And I think, just to go back to why we’re talking through these three layers, these are the things that lead us to those financial alter egos that have created all these assumptions that have created the perceptions, that have informed all the stories that have given us
Helen: the frame
So this last one, personal values. It’s actually pretty interesting because when you get together with someone, and John Di Martinis works fantastic for this. He talks about values and he explains that your values will compliment your partners, which means what’s high on your values will be low on your partners.
And what’s high on theirs will be low on
yours. no one’s values are right or wrong. Yeah. But it’s actually, you put two people’s values together, you get
Helen: a full picture.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. It’s the difference that makes us
if you don’t respect the difference. Yeah. Particularly around how you allocate and use your resources, particularly when it comes to
ZOOM0001_Tr1: then you get into
ZOOM0001_Tr1: all the time.
you are so social.
I’m not Social.
I wanna just focus on my career. Yeah. And I think it’s great that I buy books and all that sort of stuff. Yeah. But I don’t wanna go out and do any
Yeah. this is actually like the diversity and inclusion discussion.
It’s all fine and all great for to have diversity in the workplace. Right. But without inclusion,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: it’s nothing
Helen: if you do not, or you cannot relate or enable that inclusion. It’s an absolute waste of time. You can have as many different people from different backgrounds. But again, if you’re not properly complimenting each other, not listening, not understanding and not leveraging those strengths and allowing people to reach their full potential, then you’re gonna waste the importance of the difference between the
ZOOM0001_Tr1: I think there’s so much to be gained by honoring what you each
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Because when you feel like, you know what, I get to use the resources in the way that, that
Helen: I appreciate.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. And so does my partner. Then it allows you to think a bit bigger about what we want
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And I think this is why, let’s get to why it’s so hard to talk about money is because we feel like we’re losing independence.
we talked about emotional imprints. We feel like we’re losing independence. cuz now we’re jumping into these gender roles. Now we’ve got these different values. People are projecting their values onto each other. Now it feels like I’m losing control and now I’m becoming
ZOOM0001_Tr1: So you
can understand now why people get scared around money and they go, oh no, I don’t wanna do that. I don’t wanna grow, I don’t want, let’s just keep burying our
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Yeah. And not have these discussions
I just wanna pretend that this is not, happening. here’s the tragedy of
Yeah. You’re not going from independence back to dependence. If you can move through this in a constructive way, you’re going from independence to interdependence. Yeah.
Which is much
Yeah. Interdependence is where you get to use what each other’s really good at, where you get to tap into each other’s strengths, where you get to honor each other and actualize your potential.
So it’s almost like we talked about people get stuck. Yeah. They never get through the performing
because they don’t know how to move through the storming and the norming in a way that allows them to get to
Yeah. and it’s rare, isn’t it?
ZOOM0001_Tr1: rare. it’s
we don’t have the tools. And let, get to why it’s so much harder to talk about if you’ve struggled with all three, three layers and everything we’ve just said said makes sense, and you’re like, but why is it so hard
Helen: to talk
ZOOM0001_Tr1: about? Mm-hmm. This is where we need to understand and explain the cultural conditioning that we all swim
Right. Yeah. Money is a taboo topic and it’s very deliberately that way. Right? Yeah. Think about movies. Yeah.
Always. Money is the evil thing. It’s never humans that are doing the weird shit with money. It’s always money. It’s the evil thing. And the message that you get. Yeah. And religion’s great
Yeah. It’s like, to be Blessed of, the meek and the poor or whatever.
just perpetuates this idea that money is this taboo, dirty topics like dirty laundry that
Yeah, you always have those pervasive memes that we see, so money that, yeah.
Money’s evil and it craps the world. Yeah. Yeah. another point in time that really solidified this.
So I was trying to do a bit of market research. I thought, look, my experience is only my experience, so let me go out to my networks and just like, let’s pose a couple of questions. Hey, and , let’s validate either I do have a, a grasp on generally how people feel about it. And I tried to take my friends back to when they first got together with their partners and I asked them a bit about what that was like.
it was on. On a message thread and I oppose it. And normally these guys are really active on thread, like straight away they’re in there helping out, always. I got
ZOOM0001_Tr1: crickets, Crickets. I was gonna say tumbleweeds.
Helen: I got crickets. I had to go to one of
ZOOM0001_Tr1: of them. I was
Have I said I was text on the side? Have I said something really bad?
Like no one is responding to
my message? I’d actually thought, shit, this is actually a very good experiment. It’s such an awkward topic. No one wants to talk about it. Of course not. Why did I not really know that this was gonna happen? Mm-hmm. Like, who’s gonna be first? Who’s game enough to actually be vulnerable and actually say what?
Like, and this is in a group of friends. They’ve
ZOOM0001_Tr1: best friends.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: I was, I was explicitly told there’s three things you don’t talk about sex, money and politics.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And if you just quickly summarize what we’ve been talking about here, right? We’ve got
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Reactive, unconscious financial alter egos that are sabotaging our ability to relate to each other.
It’s created by these three layers of things that are kind of contributing to it. The first one being your emotional imprints that you grew up with. Yeah. The second one being gender roles. The third one being the differences in your personal values. And then you’ve got this cultural conditioning, which is telling you don’t talk about it.
And so you’re not equipped or comfortable No. Discussing the
ZOOM0001_Tr1: No. That we’ve just
yeah. And in a world where you actually need to go out and get help, and when you then a face, like normally the people who you rely on for that help.
you can’t talk about. It’s,
ZOOM0001_Tr1: it’s, it’s off the
It’s off the
So, so if you’ve struggled are, you are absolutely feeling seen
Just know this. You’re a hundred percent
Helen: not alone.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: And it’s not your fault. This isn’t something
it is your responsibility and it is within your
to improve this, to transcend it, to get beyond it.
And we see it every day. I see it every week. You’re a fantastic
This. Yeah. Look, if you’re still listening, I’m guessing you are the sort
ZOOM0001_Tr1: of person
Helen: that is so open-minded that you’re gonna take action on this.
Like, Yeah. Yeah. It’s not your fault. You’re right.
look, that’s what we’re gonna be covering on in the next episode, right? We wanted to really unpack this in a way that we did actually do it justice. I think this, like we said, we want to get beyond the saver versus spender thing and really understand why this is tough to talk about, why we struggle, why we fight, where the conflict intention comes from.
And so now that you know this, hopefully you can normalize it. You can validate where you’ve come from, and then you can start moving towards a Different kind of future. so in our next episode, we’re actually gonna be talking through what have we learned about how to set up and use your money in a way that minimizes the odds that you have to deal with all these triggers and that helps you act from the most constructive part of your brain and harness the complimentary strengths that you have as a couple, because it absolutely is possible.
And I’d say it’s one of the best things you could ever do for your relationship. Yeah. So many couples tell us this is better than therapy i’d. I would hear it all the time. Yeah, all the time. This is better than therapy.
Helen: This sends you on a completely new trajectory. And speaking from experience, there’s been nothing quite impactful like this. I’ve seen her
it’s just been willing to kind of walk through that discomfort and just lean. That’s to use a Sheryl Sandberg
Helen: to to lean
lean in. Yeah.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: and move through it because it absolutely is possible. It’s actually quite easy if you do know what you’re doing.
So we’re gonna talk through the most important, the most impactful lessons, the things we’ve learned about how to manage yourselves and how to manage your money in a way that allows you to do that. In the next episode. Coming up
Mm. Here we
ZOOM0001_Tr1: Easter. So else Second
Helen: Yes. I’m wa I was thinking there
ZOOM0001_Tr1: was two,
Helen: wasn’t there? Yeah.
ZOOM0001_Tr1: So it’s a reward for you if
ZOOM0001_Tr1: For those that tuned out and they’re back to scrolling. Socials too bad. But if you’ve got through these two episodes, right, and you’ve thought. I really want to engage my partner in this conversation and start to have this conversation with them. A really good way to do it is to share these episodes, obviously, but if you’re worried, you can’t even start that conversation.
And if you’re not even sure how
ZOOM0001_Tr1: then we’ve got you covered. Yeah. So we’ve created a step-by-step tutorial that takes you through how to set an intention for that conversation. You’ve
Helen: seen Tony?
yeah. It’ll show you how to prepare for this conversation and it’ll show you how to find the exact right words to say to make sure that your partner hears what you’re saying doesn’t get defensive and actually is open to the conversation.
And like I feel like at this point I’d like to say if you actually work through that plan, you’ve been like, seriously
Yeah. One to 2% of people that are honestly so dedicated to making this work. and you are, you are truly trying to make things work and put the effort in and to change the situation. Like you are in rare company
ZOOM0001_Tr1: can do.
And we love you
for it. We love
it. Awesome job. Hey, this has been so much fun. I’m glad we did this a few times to go through it and get it done right. And we’ve been doing it in this back studio of mine and with the fire.
It’s actually getting pretty damn hot
now, isn’t it?
Helen: it? It’s 45
in here. We’ve got our
ZOOM0001_Tr1: We’ve gotta get out. I’m struggling to breathe. But um, hey, thank you so much for doing this and I’m really looking forward to our next one, the final episode in this series.
Helen: Looking forward
ZOOM0001_Tr1: forward to it.