Twenty-two years ago my husband + I created money vows that we said out loud to one another. Prior to that we kept our silent money expectations about our partnership in our heads (not recommended). When we took our marriage vows, I can honestly say I was fairly unconscious that our collective behavior had anything to do with us creating a state of “richer” or “poorer.” My naivety at the time, most likely thought…”hey, we will deal with whatever life brings us,” rather than…”hey, lets get in alignment from the get go + create “for richer!”
To create “for richer,” many conversations are needed to talk about behaviors that create alignment supporting a united vision. I encourage all the couples I work with to create money vows when we begin our work together + to reshape those vows as needed. A vow is an agreement that speaks to how we intend to show up in our relationships. The work is matching up our verbal agreements with supporting behaviors! Sometimes easier said than done!
10 SMART REASONS TO CREATE MONEY VOWS
1. Vows keep money conversations happening on a regular basis with your partner + can take your relationship to new heights with greater intimacy.
2. When we talk about money + come into alignment with our partners, the body secretes oxytocin, called the “tend + befriend” hormone + we get that feeling of being close, bonded + that warm honey feeling circulating in our body.
3. A vow helps a couple establish priorities + to triage what is most important financially + emotionally + then your money can fund your highest priorities.
4. Vows help minimize conflict + the risk of the relationship breaking up over money. Researchers at Utah State University found that couples who disagreed once a week about their finances were twice as likely to divorce as couples who fought less than once a month.
5. Less fights can enhance your sex life!
6. Vows backed up by congruent behavior supporting them decreases the stress hormones of cortisol + adrenaline in our bodies. These hormones often place our brains + nervous system in a “fight or flight” mode of response with one another.
7. You can show your kids how to talk about money + be role models for them in how to relate to money matters in a healthy way.
8. Vows can help you reach your dreams faster because you are working to be on the same page financially.
9. Saying “I do” to your intentions means saying “I do not” to others + as a couple you get clear on what you are saying “YES” to and “NO” to.
10. You can experience blessing after blessing by co-creating a life of your unique desires as a couple!
AN EXAMPLE OF ONE COUPLE’S MONEY VOWS
“We agree to create a life of abundance in all forms, money being one of those forms. We will honor each other’s contributions to our partnership, holding time + money + energy as equal forms of contribution. We will each earn to our potential + be equal partners in decision making with all money matters with the goal of building wealth instead of creating debt. We promise to full transparency of all accounts, free of secrets.
We agree to step into uncomfortable conversations with curiosity + discovery rather than fear + judgement if we observe ourselves or each other jeopardizing the integrity of our money vows.”